the Cross Reference: I’m tired of being right

By Ellis Cross

October 29, 2012

I’m tired of being right. I warned smokers long before the smoking ban was brought to the students for a courtesy vote that it would be shoved down, or up, any available orifice of smokers just as soon as “They” found a way. Well, last week President Robert Vartabedian signed the smoking ban into law. It will take affect July 1 of next year. “They” have won and without so much as a whimper from anyone. “They” did it by going where “They” knew “They” could win. “They” used the faculty senate where “They” knew “They” had the numbers. Let me tell you who “They” are before I go further. “They” are the people who do not believe you have personal freedom. “They” believe that “They” know what is best for you, and it is best for you to live your life the way “They” want you to. “They” are actually few in number but are somehow powerful. It is by definition a NANNY STATE. Welcome to Western where it is OK to serve alcohol, paid for by Western Foundation, for President Vartabedian’s house parties and house parties of the Board of Governors, but not OK to smoke on campus. (By the way, smoking is not one of the president’s habits.) We seem to have plenty money to buy the additional insurance to cover the off campus alcohol policy, but we are seeking to save insurance money by banning smoking on campus. The president is working hard to free up drinking rules for his parties and those of the Board of Governors while he signs away the personal freedom of many of Western’s students, faculty and staff. He probably didn’t even change pens. What the president and “They” need to realize is, we once were a dry campus. I’ll make another wild prediction, since I’m batting a thousand. This smoking ban thing won’t last as long as the alcohol ban of days gone by. Just wait till the first $50,000-a-year donor or a Gold Coat member walks outside and lights up at half time. I predict you will soon see a smoking area close to Looney. Eventually those in charge will begin to make exception for those annoying contributing alum who go to events at Spratt Stadium, Spratt Hall and, oh yes, those public events at Fulkerson. What about those Chiefs fans? Don’t forget them! Surely “They” will give them a smoking area. After all, the Chiefs fans were one of the first to break the alcohol ban. Darn that general public. It is so difficult to get them to understand that they have no personal freedom here at Western. They don’t understand the power of the “They.” The problem is “They” don’t understand basic human desire. Humans desire to be free, my friends. Freedom will win. Smokers need only be patiently defiant.