Tuesday, March 06, 2007

The Smoke Nazis Strike Again!

Is anyone in Massachusetts surprised that the same legislators who think 13-year-old girls should be able to have invasive medical procedures to terminate the life of an unborn child without their parents knowledge or permission ALSO think those parents should be arrested for smoking with the 13-year-old in the car?

13-year-old having an abortion without any guidance: Acceptable risk.

Parent smoking around that 13-year-old: Unacceptable risk.

Meanwhile, does anyone in the Massachusetts legislature care what the ACTUAL risk is when it comes to being around smokers?

Will being around smokers kill you? The answer is, from a measurable, statistically-significant standpoint, no. That's what the largest specific study to date on that subject has found. There may be some, small risk of an increase in heart disease or cancer, but it's too small to measure.

Now, some Massachusetts liberals believe that the existence of such a small amount of risk is enough to legislate behavior and send the cops climbing onto our cars. If so, why don't they support mandatory helmets for all children in cars? Riding without a helmet increases the risk of injury in a car crash vs. not wearing a helmet, right?

And doesn't riding in a car increase the risk of fatality vs. mass transit or walking? Why not ban children from cars?

If the argument is that ANY risk, however slight, justifies stupid government action, then folks, there are lots and lots of stupid government actions yet to come.