EDITORIAL: Tobacco-free campus a necessity

Lariat Editorial Staff

The Saddleback College Associated Student Government is currently preparing a resolution to create a campus-wide ban on smoking. Despite staffing several smokers, the Lariat supports this proposal.

It’s generally accepted that smoking is a foul habit. In the long range, it wastes public funds by necessitating cleanup efforts, and leads to increases in health care spending.

In the short run, the practice is rude to non-smokers who have to navigate the clouds of second-hand smoke and the stockpiles of discarded butts that smokers fail to depose of appropriately.

Logically, it could be argued that simply designating specific smoking areas around campus would alleviate this debate; however, we already have attempted to implement such a solution.

Furthermore, there simply isn’t enough security staff to enforce our current regulations and hiring additional guards would cost about $60,000 a head, according Wayne Gregoire, an ASG member who is drafting the resolution.

It’s a shame that the policy has come to this, but take a look outside. Little respect is paid to the 20-foot smoking buffer around buildings, and far too many people still throw butts on the ground.

Banning tobacco from campus will ultimately improve the Saddleback environment by both eliminating trash on the ground and clearing the air we breathe.