USC must ban all smoking
Though California boasts the second lowest rate of adult smokers in the nation and many American college campuses have banned smoking, USC is still bafflingly hesitant to issue an anti-smoking policy.
USC should ban smoking on campus because it is unfair for non-smokers, who are the majority, to involuntarily breathe in the toxins that permeate our shared air supply.
Second-hand smoke is responsible for more than 49,000 deaths per year. Though smokers blatantly disregard the well-being of those around them, they also lack common courtesy. Smoking on campus is inconsiderate because many non-smokers in the area find the smell of smoke unappealing. It can give people headaches, irritate their eyes, soil their clothing and hair and ruin the pleasant meals they’re trying to enjoy outdoors.
Those who still wish to purchase and enjoy cigarettes would certainly be welcome to do so off campus. Though I acknowledge that such a policy change would be a slight inconvenience for current smokers, there are plenty of exits around the perimeter of campus that smokers can easily walk to if they want to smoke.
A smoking ban on campus would be a small change for smokers to make with a magnanimous, beneficial impact on campus life in general, bettering our campus’ air quality, our community’s health — for both smokers and non-smokers — and our school’s image.
Most businesses and restaurants in California have already banned smoking in and around their workplaces, and Los Angeles, in particular, has notoriously bad air supply problems. So why should USC contribute to the problem? Since the actions of individual USC students represent the entire student body and university name, as a community we should be more conscious about the reputation we uphold, as well as the toxins we are emitting.