Should smoking be banned in college dorms? This may be the case soon in the state of New York, where state lawmakers have sent to the governor a bill that would ban smoking in the dormitories for all schools in the state, including private schools.
So what do you think? Is this a good idea that promotes and safety for all students, or is this an invasion of the students’ privacy?
On the one hand, smoking is unquestionably a health hazard for both smokers and those who inhale second hand smoke. Dorms are usually pretty small and enclosed, so that makes the issue of second hand smoking worse. Even if some rooms on a floor are designated for students who smoke, and others are not, second hand smoke can still spread pretty easily. In addition, because dorms are so enclosed, fire hazards need to be taken very seriously. Most dorms ban candles and similar items because fires can spread so quickly in a dorm. A lit cigarette is risky in the same way that a candle is.
On the other hand, students are adults, and a dorm is their residence. We don’t forbid adults from smoking in their own homes. Sure, it would be better for everyone if they did not smoke, but because cigarettes are a legal substance, the government would be overstepping its authority by forbidding consumption of this product in people’s homes. Why is the dorm issue different—especially if the school takes measures such as smoke-free hallways?
An interesting issue. Leave your comments!