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WA:Nursing Home Puts Resident Smokers at Risk (How Sick)
kirotv.com ^ | May 4, 2006 | Chris Halsne

Posted on 05/05/2006 3:45:22 AM PDT by SheLion

A group of elderly and disabled cigarette lovers say Washington's smoking ban has become extremely hazardous to their health.

Investigative Reporter Chris Halsne found them dodging traffic in wheelchairs and walkers. Folks are starting to get used to seeing "no-smoking" signs at bars, restaurants and public buildings. But, what happens when a nursing home bans smoking without making any accommodations for residents?

Crossing the street in front of the Bremerton Health and Rehabilitation Center is not for the faint of heart, but that's exactly where we found the faint of heart traveling.

No matter their disability, if residents like Donald Pike want to smoke, the center told them they have to leave the property.

Chris: "I don't see a crosswalk."
Donald: "There is no crosswalk."
Chris: "I don't see a real smooth curb."
Donald: "No. No. Smooth curb. No. Nothing saying stop when somebody’s crossing the road."

We videotaped disabled residents limping, shuffling, even creeping their wheelchairs into the road with no staff around to help. One man nearly fell. Another disabled smoker couldn't do anything but watch.

“It's scary and especially if it rains, if we have a little snow, somebody could slip and fall and hurt themselves just to have a cigarette,” said one resident who was in a wheelchair.

“Bob” is a physical therapist for clients at the Bremerton Health and Rehabilitation Center. He risked his job to share with us his displeasure with the new no-smoking rules imposed on clients.

“I didn't believe it at first. I thought they were joking, but it was true. You're asking people who are already at risk for a fall, whose mobility is impaired, to go through the obstacle of walking hundreds of feet on unleveled terrain, over a curb, then across a real business street?”

We obtained an internal memo that states residents can no longer smoke on nursing home property. But why not?

Washington's law allows smoking in places like this as long as the cigarettes and ashes stay outside 25 feet from the door. The uncovered, designated cement smoking seat is a treacherous one block walk from the center's front door.

Resident David Olguin says that’s too far and too treacherous a journey for most.

“They go pretty slow on that hill. The cars go pretty fast. One of them is going to get run over,” Olguin said.

Administrators here were camera shy, but told us disabled residents didn't have to cross the street; it was just a suggestion. They admit, however, they want residents to quit smoking and won't permit the bad habit on nursing home property any longer.

Our videotape proves that owners of the nursing home don't have any trouble asking residents, already in frail health, to stand in the rain and cold weather to light up.

Pike complains that the new smoking ban has gone too far saying, “This is my home, ya know. Why do we have to go across the road to smoke? This is my home!”

Just to check on any other potential "quality of care" issues here, KIRO Team 7 Investigators pulled the Bremerton Health and Rehabilitation Center's February health inspection report. It's 58 pages filled with 14 separate code violations, many of them dealing with staff being inattentive to residents’ safety and welfare. Inspectors tell us if they'd have seen what we saw, they'd have tacked on a few more violations.

The week following our last visit, the center faxed us this statement. Although defending its right to ban smoking, the agency adds. "Based on recent concerns, we are looking into the creation of a smoking area with seating on the edge of our property to better accommodate residents."

Several lawmakers in Olympia tell KIRO Team 7 Investigators they believe the smoking ban should not apply to assisted living centers. House Bill 3130 reflects that, but the legislation is currently "on-hold."


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Government; US: Washington
KEYWORDS: anti; antismokers; augusta; bans; budget; butts; camel; caribou; chicago; cigar; cigarettes; cigarettetax; commerce; cruelty; epa; fda; governor; hahaha; individual; interstate; kool; lawmakers; lewiston; liberty; maine; mainesmokers; marlboro; msa; niconazis; osha; pallmall; pipe; portland; prosmoker; pufflist; quitsmoking; regulation; rico; rights; rinos; ryo; sales; senate; smokers; smoking; smokingbans; taxes; tobacco; winston
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I believe the smoking bans and the anti's who push them, are over the top and have gone way too far!  Putting our elderly at risk over a habit they have enjoyed for years.  Now, it may get them killed.  Big joke in THAT, right?!
1 posted on 05/05/2006 3:45:32 AM PDT by SheLion
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To: The Foolkiller; Just another Joe; Madame Dufarge; Cantiloper; metesky; Judith Anne; lockjaw02; ...

Who ever runs this nursing home should be shot!


2 posted on 05/05/2006 3:46:07 AM PDT by SheLion
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To: SheLion
They admit, however, they want residents to quit smoking and won't permit the bad habit on nursing home property any longer.

Our videotape proves that owners of the nursing home don't have any trouble asking residents, already in frail health, to stand in the rain and cold weather to light up.


I am against a bad habit as much as anyone, but these guys are being cruel.
3 posted on 05/05/2006 3:52:38 AM PDT by MaryFromMichigan
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To: MaryFromMichigan
I am against a bad habit as much as anyone, but these guys are being cruel.

There is no reason on earth why they are treating the elderly like this.  This is elderly abuse.  The nursing home is their home.  They have no choice but to live there.  Why can't they be accepted and just live there in peace.

4 posted on 05/05/2006 3:56:08 AM PDT by SheLion
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To: SheLion
I had a knee operation years ago that required a couple of nights stay at the local bone yard (hospital) to ensure that I remained immobile.

I was in a four banger with three others whose combined age was about 600. I couldn't get any of them to play cards or anything else, all they did was lie around moaning.

After two days of this, I dragged my self and my IV across the hall to a private bathroom for a smoke. The floor nurse burst in and demanded I cease and desist or she'd, "put you on report!"

I replied, "Who you gonna report me too, the F'n principal?"

About half an hour later my bags were packed and they shipped me home.

5 posted on 05/05/2006 3:58:26 AM PDT by metesky ("Brethren, leave us go amongst them." Rev. Capt. Samuel Johnston Clayton - Ward Bond- The Searchers)
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To: SheLion
Some people enjoy the feeling of power they have over the folks in their care.
They are superior and can control the lives of other people.

(This is not a veiled reference to Hitlery, although it could be.)
6 posted on 05/05/2006 4:06:33 AM PDT by MaryFromMichigan
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To: SheLion
I am convinced that this was the main cause of my 84 year old Mom's dying in 2003.

We had to move her from assisted living to a nursing home, as she required a higher level of care, and naturally, the "home" was smoke-free.

When they took her smokes away, she went to sleep, and refused to wake up.

No longer taking the medicines she needed to sustain life, she died after a few days.

Honest to God, you can't win for losing when dealing with fanatics- my Dad quit smoking in his seventies, and when he died 25 years later, one of the damn Docs pronounced, "Yep, the smoking did it..."

7 posted on 05/05/2006 4:06:57 AM PDT by backhoe (-30-)
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To: SheLion

I hope that if I ever have to enter any nursing home ,a friend will shoot me as I enter. I might even shoot myself the day before.


8 posted on 05/05/2006 4:07:18 AM PDT by sgtbono2002
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To: SheLion

I didn't know nursing home residents would still be smoking that late in life... The way they push the ban you would think that smoking killed more teenagers than anything else.


9 posted on 05/05/2006 4:21:38 AM PDT by just me
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To: metesky
I replied, "Who you gonna report me too, the F'n principal?"

About half an hour later my bags were packed and they shipped me home.

metesky, they are sick and obsessed.  To be treated like this over a legal product is mind blowing.

Where will it end?  I'm surprised you didn't punch her lights out.  I wouldn't have blamed you if you did.  But then, you would have really been put on report! heh!

10 posted on 05/05/2006 4:22:23 AM PDT by SheLion
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To: backhoe
Honest to God, you can't win for losing when dealing with fanatics- my Dad quit smoking in his seventies, and when he died 25 years later, one of the damn Docs pronounced, "Yep, the smoking did it..."

It's too easy to just blame everything on smoking.  When "they" don't know the real truth, they just spew "Yep, it's the smoking."  They get right off the hook with that statement.  Very very sad...............

11 posted on 05/05/2006 4:24:27 AM PDT by SheLion
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To: sgtbono2002
I hope that if I ever have to enter any nursing home ,a friend will shoot me as I enter. I might even shoot myself the day before.

And if this is the way the elderly is going to be treated, I don't want to go there either.

12 posted on 05/05/2006 4:25:43 AM PDT by SheLion
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To: just me
I didn't know nursing home residents would still be smoking that late in life... The way they push the ban you would think that smoking killed more teenagers than anything else.

I know it.  If we believed their stupid numbers, none of us should be alive let alone alive and still smoking!  I wished the general public would wake up to the anti's lies and spin. 

13 posted on 05/05/2006 4:27:13 AM PDT by SheLion
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To: SheLion

Some are better than others , but they all suck.


14 posted on 05/05/2006 4:35:39 AM PDT by sgtbono2002
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To: MaryFromMichigan

Would chewing tobacco help?


15 posted on 05/05/2006 4:45:50 AM PDT by rovenstinez
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To: rovenstinez
Would chewing tobacco help?

I chew and as far as I know it hasn't been banned anywhere yet.

Just wait 'til the smoke nazis start whining about second hand spit.

16 posted on 05/05/2006 4:49:23 AM PDT by Graybeard58 (Remember and pray for Sgt. Matt Maupin - MIA/POW- Iraq since 04/09/04)
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To: SheLion

I pray for the day we are free of these fanatics who are crazy enough to become fronts and follow orders of those that are even crazier.

The best known fronts are Hiltery and Booba who are being rewarded in all kinds of ways for being the scum they are.

Some day these people will be brought to justice and it can't be soon enough for me. Dictatorship and tyrany are not for America.


17 posted on 05/05/2006 4:50:31 AM PDT by freekitty
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To: rovenstinez
Would chewing tobacco help?

I don't think so.
Because it's not just the nicotine.
It's the ritual of tapping the pack, pulling one out, lighting up and that first, deep inhale of smoke.
(Can you tell I'm an ex smoker?)
18 posted on 05/05/2006 4:50:33 AM PDT by MaryFromMichigan
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To: SheLion

Every time we're at my in-laws and my mother-in-law wakes up in the morning it sounds like she is trying to cough a lung up. The only time I've ever felt that is during and right after a bout with bronchitis. So I'm going to assume that she has chronic bronchicial infections, I'm sure that her being a moderate smoker has nothing to do with it.


19 posted on 05/05/2006 4:52:31 AM PDT by kx9088
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To: rovenstinez; MaryFromMichigan

Would chewing tobacco help?

Never.  Not for me.


20 posted on 05/05/2006 5:03:06 AM PDT by SheLion
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To: freekitty
I pray for the day we are free of these fanatics who are crazy enough to become fronts and follow orders of those that are even crazier.

The anti's make it sound like smoking and second hand smoke is the worst thing we have going on today.  I WISH this was all we had to worry about! 

21 posted on 05/05/2006 5:04:48 AM PDT by SheLion
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To: SheLion

First off, this home could be reported to the licensing board for a resident's rights violation.

Secondly, MOST sane homes have designated smoke areas, times and staff supervision. The residents are allowed to smoke, but within these parameters. The biggest concern isn't the 'smoke' killing them but burns and fires.


22 posted on 05/05/2006 5:16:15 AM PDT by najida (Founder of the Contrarian Party....Do NOT argue with me ;))
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To: SheLion

Homosexual behavior shorten your life expectancy more than smoking, but I don't see the libs trying to curtail that.


23 posted on 05/05/2006 5:16:37 AM PDT by keats5
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To: keats5

They seem to have no problem with buggery in public bathrooms, either... but God forbid one of them light up a smoke in the can at the conclusion of their dirty business!


24 posted on 05/05/2006 5:23:44 AM PDT by thoughtomator (Celebrate Capitalism Day every May 1st! Have a happy Capitalism Day!)
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To: SheLion

"Why can't they be accepted and just live there in peace."

I agree. But they will never let them be. They're not conforming. This has to be one of the most disgusting things I have ever seen.


25 posted on 05/05/2006 5:26:45 AM PDT by 383rr ((those who choose security over liberty deserve neither; GUN CONTROL=SLAVERY)
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To: najida
Secondly, MOST sane homes have designated smoke areas, times and staff supervision. The residents are allowed to smoke, but within these parameters. The biggest concern isn't the 'smoke' killing them but burns and fires.

Another horrifying scenario!  Especially in the cold winter.......they will try to sneak a cigarette rather then go outside far from the building.  And most of them are on meds, and smoking on meds alone just isn't a good combination.

The nursing home, with compassion, should have a day room for their patients or residents who smoke.  And a staff member can be in the day room with patients when they smoke.  It's a win win for everyone. 

26 posted on 05/05/2006 5:27:10 AM PDT by SheLion
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To: keats5
Homosexual behavior shorten your life expectancy more than smoking, but I don't see the libs trying to curtail that.

I understand the life expectancy of an Aids victim is 42 years.  A smoker can live from 62 years on up to over a hundred. 

27 posted on 05/05/2006 5:29:07 AM PDT by SheLion
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To: 383rr
I agree. But they will never let them be. They're not conforming. This has to be one of the most disgusting things I have ever seen.

Nursing homes need to be monitored.  Look how many elderly were left to die in Katrina?  And we all have heard story's of old folks tied to their wheel chairs, left in hallways, head hanging down and drool coming from their mouths.

No wonder most nursing homes won't let us go in "unannounced."  heh!

28 posted on 05/05/2006 5:31:30 AM PDT by SheLion
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To: SheLion

There was an incident in this state about 6 or so years ago where a relatively young, but disabled resident was outside smoking on a warm, windy spring day and staff member was outside with him.

Anyhow, the cigarrette was blow from his hand and landed in a wad of kleenex, papers etc that was stuffed beside him in the chair.

From what I gather, all the conditions were perfect- wind, flamable materials and clothes-- and he went up like a torch before the aid could react.

The regs now in the state specify that if smoking is allowed, it must be done in a safe area, with fire detection and sprinklers, ventilation and most of all, staff supervision.

I think just about every home in this town allows smoking, just in very defined parameters of time, location and staff assistance.


29 posted on 05/05/2006 5:41:38 AM PDT by najida (Founder of the Contrarian Party....Do NOT argue with me ;))
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To: najida
I think just about every home in this town allows smoking, just in very defined parameters of time, location and staff assistance.

Well, maybe that's how it should be.  At least they still allow the old folks to relax and smoke. 

I knew someone once who was in a rehab hospital.  The smokers each morning were given 10 cigarettes from their packs.  They would only be allowed to smoke in the day room once an hour.  If they smoked two cigarettes in that hour, and ran short by the end of the evening, tough. 

I thought that was a bit harsh.  But at least they could still smoke and enjoy the day room.

30 posted on 05/05/2006 6:02:08 AM PDT by SheLion
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To: SheLion

If the owners don't want smokers on their property, that is their right. If the smokers think there is too much risk in smoking, they can choose not to smoke or choose not to live there.


31 posted on 05/05/2006 6:19:02 AM PDT by WildHorseCrash
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To: MaryFromMichigan
It's the ritual of tapping the pack

You can use smokeless tobacco to stave off the nicotine withdrawal until the ritual of smoking starts to fade...if you are trying to quit tobacco that is.
32 posted on 05/05/2006 6:20:28 AM PDT by P-40 (http://www.590klbj.com/forum/index.php?referrerid=1854)
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To: MaryFromMichigan

Why do you think indulging in a perfectly lawful pursuit should be banned? These people are PAYING BIG TIME to be where they are. Whay does management think they can ban anything/everything? Is the next thing to go feeding these people?


33 posted on 05/05/2006 6:25:01 AM PDT by Sunshine Sister
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To: SheLion
Putting our elderly at risk over a habit they have enjoyed for years.

Enjoyed? They are hooked.

34 posted on 05/05/2006 6:26:29 AM PDT by AppyPappy (If you aren't part of the solution, there is good money to be made prolonging the problem.)
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To: AppyPappy
Half the reason people get hooked is from the enjoyment.

I don't like the pre-rolled Camel/Marlboro types of cigarettes but the original Drum, Three Castles and Jester types of tobacco are genuinely enjoyable.

If I could only get pre-rolls, I wouldn't smoke.

35 posted on 05/05/2006 6:31:23 AM PDT by Psycho_Bunny (ISLAM: The Other Psychosis)
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To: sgtbono2002
I hope that if I ever have to enter any nursing home ,a friend will shoot me as I enter. I might even shoot myself the day before.

My husband and I are 35. In about 7 years we're beginning construction on our "dream" house. All the doors will be 3' wide and we're making the shower with just a small curb and large enough to roll a wheelchair into. The kitchen will have two sinks, one regular and one lowered with a space under it to roll a chair under. We're even dropping the stove top into a counter that can be lowered at will with the same space under it that the second sink has and putting in a built-in oven that opens from the side with a pull-out shelf built in under it. There'll be no stairs and there will be a ramp at one end. The guest bath will be the only room without access, but it will still be large enough to comfortably roll into for cleaning. The whole thing will be stylish enough that it doesn't scream "handicap access".

This is the home we plan on spending the rest of our lives in. If we never need these things, great. The grandkids will love having a sink built just for them. But if if we do, we'll be grateful that we took a little time and took care of these things while we did.

If more people thought like this, there'd be a lot less business for the stupid nursing homes.

The only way we're going to a home is stone-cold dead.

36 posted on 05/05/2006 6:34:41 AM PDT by Marie (Support the Troops. Slap a hippy.)
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To: Sunshine Sister
Why do you think indulging in a perfectly lawful pursuit should be banned?

What are you talking about?
I never said anything like that.
37 posted on 05/05/2006 6:44:22 AM PDT by MaryFromMichigan
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To: MaryFromMichigan

You are against a bad habit. You said so. By that statement that makes you an "anti" . Smoking is a legal activity. So is eating fast food and on and on ad nausium. Please leave us alone. We all share free will. If I'm paying "rent" to live some where I expect to enjoy the freedom to pursue what makes me happy.


38 posted on 05/05/2006 6:59:30 AM PDT by Sunshine Sister
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To: Sunshine Sister
I gotta admit your response stuns me.
Did you even read my posts on this thread?
Huge leap to go from saying smoking is a bad habit, to imply I want it banned.
I don't.

Off to work.
Catch ya later.
39 posted on 05/05/2006 7:13:55 AM PDT by MaryFromMichigan
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To: WildHorseCrash
If the smokers think there is too much risk in smoking, they can choose not to smoke or choose not to live there.

Yeh, wouldn't it be nice if it worked the other way round also?

But NOOOooooooo, we can't have that now, can we?

40 posted on 05/05/2006 7:40:11 AM PDT by Just another Joe (Warning: FReeping can be addictive and helpful to your mental health)
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To: AppyPappy
What business is it of yours?

See, they're living their life, not yours.

41 posted on 05/05/2006 7:43:25 AM PDT by Madame Dufarge
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To: Just another Joe
Yeh, wouldn't it be nice if it worked the other way round also?

But NOOOooooooo, we can't have that now, can we?

And if the tobacco junkies didn't poison the air around them, that everyone else has to breath, I wouldn't give a damn. But NOOOoooooo, they insist on spewing their filth and waste. Can't have them just smoking at home, now can we?

42 posted on 05/05/2006 7:57:20 AM PDT by WildHorseCrash
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To: SheLion

My wife has worked at a nursing home. They have already stated that no matter what laws are passed there is one thing lawmakers cannot change.

A nursing home is exactly that.....their HOME!

While the nursing home is forcing employees to exit the property to have a cig, the residents have a designated smoking area. They get it, the gov't cannot dictate at home!


43 posted on 05/05/2006 8:01:19 AM PDT by BlueStateDepression
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To: SheLion
I've been smoking for 45 years and my Doctor keeps telling me that I need to quit. My response to her is, "Doc, I want to be the one who controls what I die from and I sure hate the idea of being disabled, laying in a bed in a rest home and dying from boredom."

Selfishly, I do hope that I die before my wife does because she is what makes me smile. Her cooking beats the best restaurants in town and she certainly does more for me than any nurse or hired hand could do.

Ideally we'll die together from a lightning strike.

44 posted on 05/05/2006 8:03:40 AM PDT by B4Ranch (Immigration Control and Border Security -The jobs George W. Bush doesn't want to do.)
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To: AppyPappy
Enjoyed? They are hooked.

Ok.  Name ONE thing in life that you enjoy that you aren't "hooked" on?  That word covers a LOT of activities.

Thousands are "hooked" on running 10 miles a day.  Thousands are "hooked" on working out at the gym every day.  Thousands are  "hooked" when it comes to working on cars.

What is the difference?  People get "hooked" on things we enjoy in this life.  No harm in that.  No harm at all!

45 posted on 05/05/2006 8:03:42 AM PDT by SheLion
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To: Graybeard58

I chewed when I went to see a St Louis Rams game versus the 49ers a couple years ago. The new Rams facility was smoke free.

Until halftime at least that is. After the halftime show there was so much smoke in the dome that my eyes were watering! Needless to say ( for this reason along with 7 dollar beers and 5 dollar hot dogs) I have not been back.


46 posted on 05/05/2006 8:04:55 AM PDT by BlueStateDepression
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To: Marie; sgtbono2002
The only way we're going to a home is stone-cold dead.

I feel the same way. 

47 posted on 05/05/2006 8:05:13 AM PDT by SheLion
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To: WildHorseCrash; Just another Joe
And if the tobacco junkies didn't poison the air around them, that everyone else has to breath, I wouldn't give a damn. But NOOOoooooo, they insist on spewing their filth and waste. Can't have them just smoking at home, now can we?

So! When you go out and leave the confines of your own home, you believe that the world should rotate on YOUR ass and no one else's!  How sweet! 

We don't LIVE in PERFECT!

48 posted on 05/05/2006 8:07:54 AM PDT by SheLion
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To: WildHorseCrash
Hey, I was just responding to your post that it would be nice to have the CHOICE.

If smokers don't like it they can quit or move.
If nonsmokers don't like it they can start or move.

If you don't want a choice then you are just trying to enforce YOUR wishes on someone else.

49 posted on 05/05/2006 8:09:53 AM PDT by Just another Joe (Warning: FReeping can be addictive and helpful to your mental health)
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To: BlueStateDepression

A nursing home is exactly that.....their HOME!

While the nursing home is forcing employees to exit the property to have a cig, the residents have a designated smoking area. They get it, the gov't cannot dictate at home!

That's why I can't understand how some nursing homes are allowed to get away with this.  Forcing the aged, frail and sick elders outside to smoke.  This is totally over the top.

More from Maine:

Hospitals moving to bar psychiatric patients from smoking/Don't go nuts in Maine

''Our first concern is about health and about patients, and it's high time we made the statement that smoking is not OK in a health care environment,'' Dr. Girard Robinson said.

More cruel and inhumane treatment by Maine's Health Care Facilities.

article here

The Anti Crusade Against The Elderly


50 posted on 05/05/2006 8:19:06 AM PDT by SheLion
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