Friday 21 November 2014

Prohibitionists forced to retreat

The anti-smokers of Westminster, Massachusetts had to demand prohibition before the townspeople finally realised that they were dealing with prohibitionists, but when the penny finally dropped it was bedlam.

Firestorm erupts in anti-smoking US town

The fury – and make no mistake, it is white-hot fury – went way beyond the ordinary wrath of offended citizenry. A plan to ban the sale of tobacco has ignited a call to arms in Westminister, Massachusetts.

The outrage is aimed at a proposal by the local Board of Health that could make Westminster the first town in the United States where no one could buy cigarettes, e-cigarettes, cigars and chewing tobacco.

The uproar stems not from a desire by town residents to smoke: only 17 per cent do (a smidge higher than the statewide average). Many say they have never touched tobacco and find the habit disgusting. Rather, they perceive the ban as a frontal assault on their individual liberties.

...As shoppers come and go, they feed one another's fury.

"They're just taking away everyday freedoms, little by little," said Nate Johnson, 32, an egg farmer who also works in a car body shop.

"This isn't about tobacco, it's about control," he said.

"It's un-American," said Rick Sparrow, 48, a house painter.

Nearly 500 people packed a hearing at a local elementary school held by the three members of the Board of Health. Passions ran high, and the hearing became so unruly that the board chairwoman could not maintain order and shut down the hearing 20 minutes after it began.

The crowd started singing God Bless America in protest as the board members left under police protection. Angry residents circulated petitions demanding a recall election for the board members.
The crowd listened, but once the hearing was opened for public comment, people began to hoot and holler.

"You people make me sick,” one man growled at the board as the audience cheered.

Wayne R. Walker, a town selectman, said that the selectmen had voted unanimously to oppose the ban. “I detest smoking and tobacco in all its forms,” he told the health board, but such a “unilateral and radical approach” as banning all sales would “create a significant economic hardship.”

A resident named Kevin West said that smoking was “one of the most disgusting habits anybody could possibly do,” but added: “I find this proposal to be even more of a disgusting thing.” The shouts after his statement prompted Ms. Crete, who had issued several warnings, to declare the hearing over.

I love it when 'public health' meets the public.

Opponents of the ban blame "outside groups" that want to make the town a test case, conjecturing that because it is so small, no one would care.

By Jove, they've sussed it out. That is exactly what's been going on. As Walter Olson explains, 'grass roots' tobacco control in Massachusetts has long been driven by government sock puppet groups (sound familiar?). Why else would a tiny town of 7,400 people have its own Tobacco Control Officer?

In other words, an extra reason for the townspeople of Westminster to be angry is that they have been paying to lobby themselves. And it’s worth knowing exactly how the game plan works, because similar ones have been rolled out to localities in various states not only on “tobacco control” but on “food policy,” environmental bans and other topics. Grass roots? If so, most carefully cultivated in high places.

Alas, for prohibitionists testing the water, Americans are not yet ready for the 'endgame', the 'tobacco free generation', 'abolition' or any of their other euphemisms and so a hasty retreat has been beaten.

Westminster drops proposal to ban tobacco sales

The local board of health on Wednesday abruptly dropped a controversial proposal to ban all tobacco sales in this small central Massachusetts town, one week after hundreds of angry residents forced a public hearing on the plan to come to raucous close.

Opponents had said the proposed ban, which would have been the first of its kind in the state, was a sign of excessive government interference in private life. Some also expressed concern that a ban would harm the local economy. Board member Edward J. Simoncini Jr. made it clear the reaction had affected his vote.

“It’s no longer under consideration -- thank you, you made the difference,” Simoncini said after a brief meeting Wednesday in which the three-member board, without opening the question to the public, voted 2-1 to kill the proposal.

The audience of about 40 offered muted round of applause.

“It is obvious the town is against it and therefore I am against it,” Simoncini said. Board member Peter M. Munro also voted to withdraw the proposal. He made no public comment.

Have a good weekend.


Christopher Snowdon said...

Only voted down 2-1 though, the arrogance of these vile creatures is stunning.

Christopher Snowdon said...

So now we have confirmation of why the public and press were excluded from the COP6 in Moscow. So much for "overwhelming public support" for all the bans and restrictions.

Fear not, they'll be back, probably with a more incremental game plan next time. As DP says, the arrogance of these vile creatures is stunning.

Christopher Snowdon said...

Quite. The Crete creature is completely oblivious to the concept of democracy and free will. She feels that she has a moral duty and regrets only her failure to "educate" people. It is frightening to think how many people of her kind are in positions of power and influence.

Christopher Snowdon said...

They should consider the old cautionary tales like "Frankenstein". And think about what always happens, when the peasants are fed up with the antics of the mad scientists. Hint: Pitchforks and torches ...

Christopher Snowdon said...

Yep you can tell literally nothing would have changed her mind. Psychopath.

Christopher Snowdon said...

Crete is up for re-election in 2015 one story I read said she would not seek that seat again.

Christopher Snowdon said...

Mr. Snowden,
In this case, as usual, the grass roots are astroturf.
While Crete and her co-conspiratiors have gotten their well deserved thumping and can kiss any political future goodbye, few look at who or what put them up to it
With a H/T to Audrey Silk of NYCLASH, the money and motivation, the colonies have their own version of publicly funded charities, is funneled to local sycophants:
who put forth their twisted agenda and leave the sources unscathed.
Maybe Deborah Arnott may well take notice of the inroads of the recent successes of UKIP and how they've put their supporters in both Tory and Labour parties at risk.

Christopher Snowdon said...

What I do not understand is why Simoncini and Munroe voted for it in the first place. Whence did the proposal to ban tobacco sales come?
I vaguely suspect that Crete would have brought it up and pushed it like mad 'on behalf of the children', and the other two were just scared of her. I've been on committees and seen precisely that sort of thing happen. Crete WAS the committee.