Right of Reply; Marjorie Nicholson
The Director of the pro-smoking group FOREST answers David Aaronovitch' s attack on tobacco
Monday 12 October 1998
He does, however, have a serious point. Why do restaurateurs accommodate smokers, and, according to him, offer them the best tables?
Could it be that smokers spend more money, eat out more frequently, or are simply nicer people to have around?
And, if there were a genuine demand for the type of high-class eatery that is demanded by Mr Aaronovitch, wouldn't some bright entrepreneur have stepped into the frame by now?
But let us explore his "National Kick a Smoker Day" proposal that the Government legitimise violence against its 15 million citizens who smoke. A fundamental tenet of democracy is the protection of society's minorities, not the incitement of physical violence against them.
So how do we reconcile Mr Aaronovitch with the rest of society? How about a one-way ticket to California, where smoking is prohibited not only in restaurants, but along whole streets? If he wishes to remain in Britain, perhaps we should sign him up to one of the Government's proposed "good citizenship" courses (a day in school with a bunch of 13-year-olds could do him some good).
Or, better still, raise the money for him to open his own restaurant, exclusively for anti-smokers, with not even smoked salmon on the menu.
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