Most people in SAR support ban

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 01 October, 2002, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 01 October, 2002, 12:00am

Executive director of the Tobacco Institute of Hong Kong Peter C. H. Tam says individual restaurant owners should be allowed to choose whether or not to allow smoking in their premises (South China Morning Post, September 24).

Mr Tam's salary is paid by an industry that sells a product that kills half a million people every year, accepts no responsibility for those deaths and shows no remorse. It is from this moral high ground that he has deemed it 'highly acceptable' that only a handful of restaurants in Hong Kong have chosen to ban smoking.

However, he feels that other restaurateurs who would like to follow suit should feel the brunt of the outrage of the few nicotine-addicted customers Mr Tam's industry has created. Clever 'climate of fear' tactics, indeed. After all, the individual restaurant owner is easy to intimidate. Fortunately, during the consultation session, the people of Hong Kong overwhelmingly (99 per cent) told their government they want tobacco smoke out of their restaurants.

Most restaurant managers have already made plans to conform with the long-anticipated law and are just waiting for the all-clear signal. Once passed, everyone, when they go out to eat, will be able to breathe more easily.