Now it's true, I do consider myself a Libertarian. I have written before how I think ALL drugs should be legal. After all its your body, you should be allowed to put whatever you want into it. But I absolutely hate smoking. I can't stand the smell, having cigarette smoke in my face, and how both of those will ruin clothes, paint, and basically everything it comes in contact with. So how can I justify banning smoking while supporting freedom? When I realized the part I hate wasn't the cigarette itself, but the second hand smoke. You want to shove a flaming death stick in you face, go ahead. But the second that smoke leaves your mouth it had better not come near me. You are free to smoke, however your supposed "addiction" does not override my wanting to breathe oxygen and not wanting to smell like an ashtray. Simply put, your choice to smoke in public infringes on my freedom to choose NOT to smoke, and is therefore illegal (or at least it should be).
Overlooking the obvious
Another thing that annoys me, is how smokers get special privileges. Littering is illegal. It not only destroys our environment, but it can get you a pretty hearty fine. So why do cigarette butts not count? They are flung from cars into oncoming traffic, left in playgrounds and sidewalks, and even in every place imaginable in public restrooms. No one says anything because they're so small, but why does that matter? Who made this practice socially acceptable? Why do I have to clean up after your filthy habit because I find a half smoked cigarette in my lawn where my kids and pets play? That is unacceptable.
Working at not working
The "smoke break" is something else I take issue with. This one is not quite so commonplace, as different companies have different rules, but I think most non-corporate jobs allow employees to take the occasional mini-hiatus do long as it doesn't interfere with their job too much. What about non-smokers? If once a hour I just got up and disappeared for 10-15 minutes it'd be grounds for termination. But if I came back smelling like death, all is forgiven. Pay equality is a bug topic in the news, with minorities making less for doing the same job. I agree with that, gender, race, religion and factors like that should not be part of determining ones pay scale. Job performance, however, plays a large part; and if I'm working harder and being more productive than someone continually "going out for a smoke", then I should be compensated accordingly.
It's not hard to change this. Smoking is a choice, not an addiction like cigarette companies want you to think,and therefore can be regulated. Clean up after yourself. Be mindful of where your smoke is and how it may effect those around you. You have to be 18 or older to buy cigarettes, so it shouldn't be too much to ask you to act like an adult. And don't shame non-smokers for complaining about your filthy habits when you fail to adhere to these; because when it comes down to it, your "smoker's rights" are not enforceable, and should go up in smoke.