Smoke This

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ihihLooks like there may be more kids lighting up outside Butler soon–if ESC gets its way, smoking will be prohibited in all suites, the last step in a process that began two years ago with the banning of smoking in corridor-syle housing. ESC passed a resolution tonight (14 in favor, 0 against, and 5 abstaining) saying as such, which outgoing president Dan Okin says originated from “student concerns.” He’s also been in touch with the relevant adminisitrators–Herman Matte of Dining Services and Kevin Shollenberger of Student Affairs, to name a few–who he says “will move forward if the students call for it.”

But are they calling for it? CCSC discussed the proposal at their meeting Sunday night, and decided to recommend no change until the councils get a better read on student opinion (in 2005, 51% of students polled wanted smoking banned in all residences).  VP Policy Izumi Devalier noted that, unlike the previous change, banning smoking in suites would leave smokers with no alternative but to feed their habit in the cold. She added that the vast majority of the CCSC e-board doesn’t smoke.

Bwog’s bet: anything that happens will be because admin wanted it anyway. Sad, but true.


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  1. Shh  

    Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain. The students affect real change.

  2. bwog!  

    hey bwog...link to the survey housing/dining has about this!
    theres a link to the survey right on their homepage www.columbia.edu/cu/housing

  3. College Libertarian  

    I abhor cigarettes, but this is a terrible idea.

    The ESC is essentially inviting CU Housing to install extra sensitive smoke alarms in suites (which they will do, all the better to catch and fine you), which will lead to more late night false fire alarms, not to mention a hefty fine and police involvement for recreational smoking that was once a private matter.

    Okin and his pack of ESC Quislings should be run out of town with (smoking) torches and pitchforks for trying to sell out the limited privacy that we enjoy in our $7000 broom closets.

    The policy as it stands says that smoking is only allowed in suites where no one in that suite objects. Anyone who dislikes smoke can speak to their suitemates and quash the problem, without ruining it for all future Columbians, world without end, Amen.

    • even  

      if they make it against policy to smoke, it still isn't illegal.

      • obvious?  

        i'm pretty sure #3 was not referring to tobacco when s/he mentioned legality

      • actually  

        if they make it against policy to smoke in a dorm, it is "illegal" as the dorms are columbia owned property, and columbia has the right to take disciplinary action if you violate their policy.

        they wouldn't put in different smoke detectors and try to fine people, they didn't do that in the hall-style dorms, and they're all smoke free.

    • marketplace  

      It's private property, and you don't have to live in a dorm, or even go to Columbia. You have a the liberty to go to another college, so don't get self-righteous about this sort of thing.

      I see it this way: Now I'll have to wal

  4. question  

    i know the llc is a dry dorm, but is it also against the rules to smoke there? i mean its suite housing, but then it is the llc. anyone know for sure?

    • former llc RA

      If I remember correctly (and I pretty much slept through the entire RA orientation), the LLC is "substance-free"--no smoking, no drinking. of course people do it anyway, because obviously the RAs have nothing better to do than bust your ass after getting 8 million complaints from other suite members. ugh.

  5. dang

    i enjoy a clove or two every now and then. let me enjoy it in my room...even though i'll just put my fan in my window and keep smoking despite the ban!

  6. are

    you gonna cover barnard sga elections?

  7. blah  

    columbia is one of the last colleges in the entire country to allow smoking in dorms. the whole suite thing is nonsense, i've lived in EC for 2 years now and although no one smoked in my suite, my room always smelled like smoke because the suite next door to me had people smoking it in. it's the year 2007 for christ sake, smoking is not cool, it kills you. get over yourself, and accept that the less than 30% of people that smoke do not have the right to pollute the air of the more than 70% who don't.

    i've been pushing for smokefree dorms since freshman year, it's about freaking time.

  8. uhhh  

    judy schapiro is resigning.

    also, yay to no smoking.

  9. thanks  

    Thanks, #10--I have experienced the same problem, where smoke is clearly not contained to one suite. Furthermore, although perhaps there hasn't been overwhelming feedback (51% is not a "clear majority"), smoking is a little different from your average referendum item.

    If 1% of students find the smoke that seeps in from their neighbors' suite offensive, then that's a problem. Second-hand smoke is a health hazard (for cancer reasons, and to asthmatics), not to mention offensive to smell and breathe.

    On top of that, there have been several fire safety issues with cigarettes in dorms. I appreciate #3 remarking on potentially more smoke detectors, but I doubt that will be the case (I haven't heard of more smoke detectors being installed in corridor residences since smoking was banned there several years ago).

    We are not taking away your right to smoke, we're taking away your right to offend others, because quite frankly, that right is not warranted. It's analogous to quiet hours.

  10. Question...  

    What about Felipe Tarud?

    What's his position on the ban?

  11. OK?  

    "If 1% of students find the smoke that seeps in from their neighbors' suite offensive, then that's a problem." That's a ludicrous position: I'm sure 1% of the population can be found to be offended by just about anything.

    The solution is to fix the ventilation that causes this issue, which Housing is doing.

    Play on, play out.

  12. seriously bwog  

    where have you been with the shapiro stuff. it broke yesterday

  13. #17  

    Definitely Dan Okin

  14. #17  

    Or Kevin Shollenberger

  15. i love  

    that when anyone posts some information which might side with dan okin, it's considered him. or an administrator.

  16. Dan Okin...  

    Used to be a smoker.

  17. I still remember  

    the days of Lit Hum when I would walk out of Hamilton into a literal cloud of cigarette smoke, and continue choking until I was well on college walk. If you want to kill yourself, that's your right, and I respect that; but you better respect my right to breathe clean air in public spaces, as well as my private space. Smoke in your suite all you like, I really don't care. But if that smoke either seeps into my suite or permeates my future living space, then I think you can see where we have a problem.

  18. Dan Okin ...  

    Isn't this a job for the UHC? Shouldn't that be more powerful? Why don't you go away and stop thinking you are God's gift to students? Why can't you defend yourself with you damn name? Maybe you should try winning an election where more than 15 people voted for you.

  19. noooo...  

    the survey is officially terrible and its results immediately disregarded.

    what kind of survey consists of TWO questions!?

  20. moph  

    typically, administrators have left this one (relatively) up to the student councils. who knows what kind of pressure is being put on dan this time, but I know back in the day they were fairly responsive.

  21. people  

    are bitches. here's a test for you, courtesy of doug stanhope:
    (a) nicotine is the most addictive substance known to man(which is something i hear preached all the time by anti-smoking crusaders)
    (b) second hand smoke is harmful and killing that many people,

    (c) do you know anyone addicted to second-hand smoke?

    No, you don't, because you're full of shit and whining to get your way. anyone who complains about "clouds" of cigarette smoke affecting them outside should probably spend their lives in a bubble, because i'm not sure their lungs can withstand the vigors of the harsh and cruel oxygen of the great outdoors.

    kick us out of bars and restaurants, fine. stop us from smoking withing ten feet of buildings, great. but if you try to tell me now that i will not be able to smoke in my own goddamn home, there will be hell. HELL.

    take your nanny-state and go fuck yourselves.

    • okay  

      while i understand you could be upset at this, and that no one can be 'addicted' to second hand smoke, the US Government has shown that it is dangerous to others (http://www.cdc.gov/tobacco/data_statistics/Factsheets/SecondhandSmoke.htm)

      to me, the danger is real, and I DON'T want to be subjected to second hand smoke because i would rather not have the excess tar and nicotine making its way into my body. that's my choice and my right to defend against. if it means you all smokers have to be cold, then so be it, but i have every right to protect my body from that affront.

      also, it's UNIVERSITY RESIDENCE HOUSING. it is NOT YOUR OWN HOUSE. you are in residence there and abide by the rules of the university.

    • wow  

      you're a damn idiot.

      what gain would anti-smokers be getting from stopping others from smoking if it's not health they're concerned with?

      • haha  

        "what gain would anti-smokers be getting from stopping others from smoking if it's not health they're concerned with?"

        Seven comments later, and you already have your answer. People who are slightly inconvenienced in the most miniscule of ways (i.e. having to walk through "smoke clouds" for five seconds) hold all the cards in denying the habit that plenty of sane people practice and enjoy.

  22. smoking cigs  

    smells bad and i don't like it. at least weed smells slightly pleasant. earthy, if you will.

    basically, people who smoke are smelly, and gross. they'd smell better if they quit smoking and didn't shower even.

    • ffs  

      i'm not a smoker but this is ridiculous. i have more sympathy for smokers than i do for my fellow non-smokers who can't tolerate anyone smoking "near" their suite or OUTSIDE THE BUILDING IN WHICH THEY HAVE CLASSES. second-hand smoke is probably a health hazard if you live with someone who smokes regularly... but if you pass smokers on the sidewalk occasionally, and you complain about that, i hope you never go into a parking garage, or put sweet & low in your coffee. haven't you read the warning signs/labels about carcinegenic chemicals?!?

      seriously, how much goddamn control do you need over everything around you? is there no shame in being utterly self-centered anymore?

  23. Why not  

    Do what they used to do in corridor building and make half the floors smoking and half non smoking

  24. just to be clear...

    the "survey" was a web poll in which students (or anyone) could vote as many times as they pleased. i myself voted multiple times. so the 51% figure is pretty meaningless.

  25. smoking should be

    banned not only in rooms but everywhere on campus. i have to hold my breath every time i walk in and out of butler, it's disgusting. the more inconvenient smoking becomes, the more smokers will quit, a result that would be good for everyone.

  26. this is ridiculous  

    no one is asking you to stop smoking. they are asking that if you do smoke, that you don't influence other people's living arrangements. you want to smoke, that is fine, and i think everyone at cu respects your wishes to do so. the issue arises when you impact others with your actions, and smoking does this.

    moral of the story: smoke, but do it away from others and their living arrangements. bitches.

  27. even  

    facebook wants us to quit smoking! listen to the all-powerful media empire: http://columbia.facebook.com/group.php?gid=2231342343

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