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The Smoking Ban
Just over ten years ago, Mayor Bloomberg began his crackdown on tobacco by enacting a smoking ban which prohibited lighting up in restaurants and bars, effectively ending nightlife as everyone knew it. By which I mean, you could suddenly go home without your clothes reeking of cigarette smoke to such a degree that you had to get out of them the second you stepped inside, thereby being naked and potentially facilitating sex with whatever random person you went home with that night. Basically, Bloomberg stopped everyone from having sex. The end. Well, ok. That's not exactly what happened. In fact, despite all the uproar from bar owners and smokers that New York's economy would lose approximately bazillions of dollars a year and that everything would be terrible forever and ever after the ban was enforced, we're now a solid decade in and people still go out to drink in New York. Not only that, but the Bloomberg administration proudly points to statistics that claim the ban is responsible for "the prevention of roughly 10,000 premature smoking-related deaths, and a 6.7 percent decrease in New York City smokers between 2002 and 2011." Beyond the effect that the smoking ban had on the city's tobacco enthusiasts, this one act foreshadowed the rest of Bloomberg's approximately 800 years in office by demonstrating just how much Bloomberg likes to tell people what to do. And, um, he likes it a lot. Like, way more than is natural. I really wonder how he's going to occupy himself once he's no longer mayor. What's he going to ban? Who will pay attention? So many questions.