President-elect Obama has freedom restricted
Recently I saw a headline that I just could not help but stop to read. It stated Obama says he won't be smoking in White House
Why does that matter? Because President Obama is a smoker. Just like millions of other Americans. And it was kept so quiet you would have thought it was a national secret. You would be amazed by the number of people I have spoken to during the Democratic Primaries and since that have no idea President Obama smokes.
Not that it should be a big deal. He is in good health, exercises, eats well and is relatively young. He has been smoking for 20 years now. And it's political ramifications are really meaningless.
Yet it seems to be a big deal somehow. And I feel that is because these days smokers are treated as if they are second-class citizens.
We have all heard the horror story figures and stats that are proclaimed by anti-smoking groups. Some might even know that many of these stats are made up or based on false figures from the Government. That does not make smoking something worth doing, but it makes it far from the plague some would like others to think.
President Obama smoking does not mean the nation will fail to operate properly. He would not be the first, and very likely not the last, President that smokes.
But think about this. The White house is the home of the President. And in his own home, the President is not free to make a decision on how to live his own life. He can have a bowling alley installed, or a movie theater. he could get a pool or virtually anything he wishes in the White House, but he can't have a cigarette without breaking the law.
The President is not free enough to do as he pleases behind his own closed doors. Some in California love that though. Notably those that would ban smoking in your own home, as was attempted earlier this year. But I find it a terrible insult to personal freedom.
Just as smoking has been banned in bars and other public places across the nation, it is banned in the private residence of the symbol of American freedom. That's not a positive statement. Nor is the fact that he has had to hide his smoking from the public.
Smoking is not the healthiest habit. Neither is eating McDonald's every day. But as adults and consumers we have the freedom to make that choice. And nothing should prevent anyone from such a choice in their own home. To do so is tantamount to restricting the television you can see, the movies that are made, the books that can be in a library and so on.
Freedom is only free if it allows choice, not Government mandate. If President Obama chooses to quit smoking it should not be a political mandate, nor based on public polling and political gain. And if he chooses not to quit, he should be free to do that as well. A restriction on his personal freedom, in an act that is legal and enjoyed by tens of millions of Americans, is a restriction on freedom in America.
Health nuts may not like that, but that is their freedom to express that thought. But if we can restrict the symbol of freedom personified in the Office of the President, the act of freedom can be restricted on anyone. It's just a thought you might want to consider.