Milwaukee County Supervisor Peggy West is the latest Darwin award candidate for her bizarre comments to the Milwaukee County Board's Transportation Committee which is considering a proposal from County Executive Scott Walker (hardly a fan of big government) to ditch the smoking lounge at Mitchell Field.
According to the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel: "Supervisor Peggy West, who is not a member of the committee, testified against the measure, saying that abolishing the airport smoking lounge would hurt Milwaukee's ability to attract business."
Where's the data to back that up? Virtually every study of communities and states that enacted smoke free dining shows no loss of business across the board and, in fact, increased business in some communities. That type of moronic comment is ignorant and corrupt.
Then there's another rocket scientist, Kelly Wirth, a Midwest Airlines employee, who presented supervisors with some 2,000 signatures she gathered at the airport lounge in opposition to eliminating the smoking room. She claims smokers would avoid flying through Mitchell if the smoking lounge was cut and try to sneak a smoke in restrooms and stairwells.
Hmmm. Apparently the best care in the air isn't good enough for her and the nicotine nitwits. Let's examine that claim a bit more carefully. Just where would these passengers go? Chicago? Nope. Airports there have been smoke free for years -- and it is enforced. Madison? Hardly. How about South Bend? Not inside the building (but there are two outdoor smoking huts for the truly addicted).
The interesting thing about the tobacco lobby and their surrogate smurfs is that their arguments resemble mirages. At first they might look like something but as you get closer to the facts their logic gets more fuzzy and, when you reach them, it disappears.
Listen up, crybabies. There is no constitutional right to smoke in a public facilility or premises held out to the public. Get over it. And if you want to gripe about it, at least tell the truth.
And, by the way, Supervisor West likes to tout that she's the first Latino elected to the county board (it's on her web page). Given that the tobacco companies target Latinos and other minorities, and minority youth in particular, you'd think she wouldn't be in bed with the tobacco lobby. Either this politician is plain stupid or is willing to sell out her own community.