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Letter to the Editor: Clear message

— Clear message

To the editor:

Mary Gale, administrator from North Central Public Health Department, certainly has made her agenda known regarding smokers. She advocates confronting people over their smoking. She advocates suggesting to people disembarking the cruise ships they should not smoke (very welcoming). She advocates charging smokers more in taxes who smoke in order to “discourage” them.

When did the outdoors become available to the majority, but not everyone? There is no scientific evidence that outdoor secondhand smoke is harmful to anyone.

What happened to the common sense idea of desinated smoking areas and receptacles for smokers. It looked to me like everyone pretty much abided by this.

This is a legal product that raises millions a year in taxes to fund everything from schools to health care.

I hope the city council uses common sense and doesn’t give The Dalles a motto: You’re welcome here, but only if you don’t smoke.

Peggy McCormick,

The Dalles

Editor’s note: At least one study does indicate the risk of harm from outdoor exposure to secondhand smoke. The Stanford University Outdoor Secondhand Smoke Study concluded: “Our main finding is that air pollution from outdoor tobacco smoke can be quite high near active smokers. The average levels can be comparable to those measured indoors when people smoke. When one is within a few feet of an outdoor smoker and downwind, the levels are highest. An important finding was that a person near an outdoor smoker could breathe in wisps of smoke that could be tens or hundreds of times more concentrated than normal background air pollution levels.

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