View Full Version : Smoking on public golf courses

ralph wiggum
10-14-2009, 12:42 PM
Inspired by this story (http://www.latimes.com/sports/la-sp-random8-2009oct08,0,3468654.story), which didn't seem to appear around here.

Michael Jordan gets a no-smoking reminder

After the basketball legend is shown smoking a cigar on public golf course, San Francisco officials remind PGA about ban before Presidents Cup.

If this had happened a month ago, the San Francisco Chronicle and city officials would have been another party skewered in Michael Jordan's Hall of Fame induction speech.

The newspaper published photos Tuesday of Jordan smoking a cigar during a practice round at Harding Park, despite the city's ban on smoking on public golf courses. City officials asked the PGA Tour to remind Jordan he can't smoke while being an honorary assistant at the Presidents Cup.

"It was sort of a gentle nudge reminding them that smoking is illegal and that we would appreciate their support," Recreation and Park General Manager Phil Ginsburg told the Chronicle.

As for enforcing the $100 fine on Jordan? Matt Dorsey, the spokesman for City Atty. Dennis Herrera, remains unsure how that will play out.

Said Dorsey: "But don't expect me to ask him for it."

Here is the City of San Francisco ordinance (http://www.sfgov.org/site/bdsupvrs_page.asp?id=27960) that Jordan violated:

San Francisco's Proposed Policy

State law currently prohibits smoking in most enclosed public spaces or places of employment1 and provides a $250 fine for smoking or disposing of any tobacco-related products within 25 feet of a playground or tot lot sandbox area.

The San Francisco Health Code currently prohibits smoking in certain buildings and enclosed structures including bars, restaurants, sports stadia, child care facilities, places of governmental assembly, polling places, health and educational facilities, business and nonprofit organizations, theatres, aquariums, libraries, museums, and convention halls2.

Sup. Alioto-Pier's proposed legislation would further prohibit smoking,

on any unenclosed area of property in the City and County of San Francisco that is open to the public and under the jurisdiction of the Recreation and Park Commission or any other City department if the property is a park, square, garden, sport or playing field, pier, or other property used for recreational purposes.

This would include the entire outdoor section of Golden Gate Park, all piers used for recreational use under Port control, all City-owned plazas and squares such as Union Square, and public golf courses such as Harding Park. The proposed law would not apply to private property, San Francisco Unified School District grounds, or to public areas outside the jurisdiction of the City such as the Presidio and Ocean Beach. As such, the proposed outdoor smoking policy would be the first for a California county and among the most comprehensive in the state.

The proposal calls for violations to be treated as infractions punishable by a fine of $100 for the first violation, $200 for the second violation within a year, and $500 for the third violation in a year. Only peace officers - uniformed police and sheriff - may issue citations.

I don't want to get into the smoking in bars/restaurants debate, that's been done to death.

But I see absolutely no rationale for banning smoking on a public or private golf course. What's the point?

What say you?

10-14-2009, 12:55 PM
How do you play golf without a stogie and an adult beverage!?:D

In a great big old golf course who is the smoke going to bother anyway? More nanny crap!

10-14-2009, 12:59 PM
In real terms it's a completely pointless effort. Second hand smoke has a dubious place in health concerns for most people at best and at worst it's just annoying in an outdoor environment. You could make the argument that cigar and cigarette smokers might contribute to more trash on the course but you could deal with that by fining people who leave trash on the greens.

The actual real reason for these laws and reactions is to punish the immorality of smokers. In the public mind, smoking has taken the place of unauthorized sex in terms of outrage, disgust, and socially-sanctioned rejection. You can't snub a unmarried mother, a promiscuous gay man, or lecherous middle-aged woman but you can wag your finger at cigar-smokers and you can say any rude or contemptuous thing you like to or about cigarette smokers. ;)

10-14-2009, 01:00 PM
I'm a smoker, so I don't see why people can't smoke outside at the golf course. I have a rabid non-smoking friend who would probably say that the cloud of smoke is offensive to her allergies. She always complained at work about smokers hanging around under the awning, during a rainstorm. "I have to walk through that cloud of smoke to get to the door".

As I pointed out yesterday, we in Michigan are still free to smoke in restaurants and bars, if the owners allow it. I'm sure that the legislature will eventually ban it, but so far, they haven't-the casinos want an exception, and that's what they are now arguing about. It'll still be de facto legal in Detroit. The DPD doesn't even have the manpower to enforce it.

I'm opposed to a smoking ban in bars and restaurants. I think the owners should be the ones who decide. If non-smokers don't want to eat or drink in smoking establishments, they can go elsewhere. The casinos should get their exception, if the ban does go through, because otherwise, they will lose too much business to the indian casinos. The Detroit casinos do so well because Windsor banned smoking in their casinos, so canucks who like to smoke when they gamble come here. Americans go to gamble in Windsor because they are deluded enough to think they will win big and not have to pay US taxes.

ralph wiggum
10-14-2009, 01:03 PM
How do you play golf without a stogie and an adult beverage!?:D

In a great big old golf course who is the smoke going to bother anyway? More nanny crap!

If this were enacted at my country club, by the club, my state or municipality, the club would close down. Smoking in the clubhouse has already been banned by the state, this would be the nail in the coffin.

I just think it is absurd.

10-14-2009, 02:59 PM
I am an ex-smoker. I hate it when I'm sitting in a bar and too many people around me are smoking (Thailand doesn't enforce it's non smoking ordnance).

Having said that, I am also a rabid golfer. And I have never had a problem with other players that smoke on the course. I don't like seeing butts on the course but I don't like empty coke cans either :confused:

To me this is another one of those state sponsored efforts to control what people do via a slow demonization of behavior. The thing is, instead of educating kids about the health issues and letting smoking die there will be a rebound effect when they see it as an act of rebellion against the state. Stupid state.

Do I think it is stupid to smoke? You bet your ass. Do I feel it my job or the states to manipulate the law to force you to smoke? No. Silly ordnance.

10-14-2009, 03:09 PM
The crybabies win again... The PGA should scrap the outing there and move it to another city...

ralph wiggum
10-14-2009, 08:34 PM
The crybabies win again... The PGA should scrap the outing there and move it to another city...

The event took place last weekend, so it's a little late now. I was kind of surprised this story didn't get posted here, but since I'm one of the few vocal golf fans, I guess no one noticed.