Perhaps ETS cannot literally pole vault, mind you, but how else can you explain its ability to transport itself through an unlikely catacomb of walls, windows, and doors that provides a substantial barrier between a host and an unsuspecting victim?
Unlike some of the more famous historical plagues, this killer is not known to be carried by rats or fleas or mosquitoes. It is not incubated in the filth of leaking sewage, is not a byproduct of mold or mildew, and it does not worm its way into our bodies through compromised food sources.
Yet, its ability to penetrate through and around walls on seemingly nothing more than a wisp makes it responsible for endangering the health and safety of anyone who might happen to be casually and unintentionally exposed.
Fortunately, we the people can count on all levels of government to protect us from all hazard, and the Detroit Housing Commission may be next in line to take this killer head on. If early indications are accurate, the commission next week will take a bold step that could benefit the health of all those unfortunate souls who might otherwise be exposed to the dangers of ETS while living under a wonderfully maintained government provided tenement roof.
But, the Detroit Housing Commission is not marching into battle alone. It has the full backing of the Department of Housing and Urban Development, an agency whose acronym for years was assumed by many to actually stand for "Hell Upon Detroit." Not any more.
Because Environmental Tobacco Smoke (ETS) can migrate between units in multifamily housing, causing respiratory illness, heart disease, cancer, and other adverse health effects in neighboring families, the Department is encouraging PHAs to adopt non-smoking policies. By reducing the public health risks associated with tobacco use, this notice will enhance the effectiveness of the Department’s efforts to provide increased public health protection for residents of public housing. Smoking is also an important source of fires and fire-related deaths and injuries.Government owned tenements are apparently just another of a countless number of battle grounds in the never ending war between our benevolent government caregivers and the rights of individual citizens to live lives without a nagging Mom sitting on their shoulder.
While those living in government owned housing voluntarily cede many of their rights and responsibilities to the government itself, this exposes yet again one of the favorite tactics that bureaucrats have in wresting liberties away from individuals; that is, money with strings.
If you are going to enjoy the benefits of a public park, you had better not light up. If you are going to open a business that needs a license, you had better operate it in an approved manner. If you are going to use a public health care system, you had better put on that helmet. If you are going to build a home with a loan underwritten by a government agency, you had better put in an access ramp. And, if you are going to live in government housing, you had better walk off the property every time you want to grab a smoke.
Where will it end? Not all subsidized housing is government owned. Yet, if the government has franchise to control the behaviors of those who choose to live within the walls it wholly provides, could it not conceivably have the ability to control the behaviors of people that enjoy the benefits of housing units that accept reduced rent subsidies?
If that is the case, why can't the government force preferred behaviors onto those who purchased their home with a strings-attached loan guaranteed by government? Why can't it force behaviors on people who build their homes during a process that requires government inspection after government inspection before occupancy? Why can't it force behaviors on people who can only access their property through easement on public lands? On and on and on.
No, ETS cannot pole vault--it merely travels out the window of a smoker's flat, takes a hard right or left, travels horizontally down the walk for twenty feet or so, and then eddies through the windows or door of an unsuspecting non-smoking neighbor. All this while maintaining the power to kill!
No, I don't fear ETS's ability to transport itself by whatever means. What I do fear is a government intent upon transferring its benevolent power onto the rest of us by whatever conceivable means possible.