A majority of Americans say they want the government to play a larger role in their lives and make it illegal to smoke in public areas, according to a new report from Gallup.
Because this same majority, 56 percent, has apparently been trained to think that the government is here to make them feel better when they're uncomfortable.
Delicate little flowers.
“By contrast, until 2008, Gallup found most Americans were opposed to a ban on smoking in public places, with as few as 31% in favor of such a ban in 2003,” Gallup reported.
And then there's this: Nineteen percent of the survey’s respondents say they support a Congress making it “totally illegal” to smoke.
Because these people hate freedom.
The latest results come from Gallup's July 7-10 Consumption Habits survey, in which 21% of Americans report smoking cigarettes, near the historical low. Gallup first began asking about banning public smoking in 2001. At that time, 39% of Americans were in favor of making smoking in public places illegal, while 60% were against it.
Sometime between 2008 and 2011, when Gallup did not ask this question, attitudes shifted from a majority of Americans being against making smoking in public places illegal to a majority being in favor of making it illegal.
While the majority of Americans are currently in favor of making smoking in public places illegal, only 19% are in favor of making smoking in the U.S. completely illegal. The percentage who are in favor of making smoking totally illegal in the country has been largely steady since Gallup began asking this question in 1990, but it has ticked up slightly in recent years. From 1990 to 2001, an average 13% of Americans supported banning smoking completely. However, in the last two years, the average rose to 21%.
Look, we get that times have changed and that attitudes about smoking have evolved a lot over the past few years. But people would rather that the feds get involved and start passing bans than, you know, just getting up and moving?*
* If anyone has a reason not to want to be around secondhand smoke, it's me, a former smoker of 14 years. So if I can handle it, you can handle it. Stop whining, suck it up and ask your server to move you to another table.