California, being a progressive state, is the first to ban smoking in bars and restaurants for the entire state. Now that ban has been expanded to many public places. More and more states are also moving in similar directions.
One would imagine, perhaps in a distant future, that smoking would be prohibited just like drugs, with few exceptions for mitigating circumstances.
Perhaps this idea is far too extreme for now. A significant portion of our population is still addicted to smoking. But everybody would agree that, in general, smoking is bad to our health. It is bad to the people who smoke, and even worse to those who had to suffer from second hand smoke.
Remember the 18th constitutional ammendment
- "... the manufacture, sale, or transportation of intoxicating liquors within, the importation thereof into, or the exportation thereof from the United States and all territory subject to the jurisdiction thereof for beverage purposes is hereby prohibited. ..."
This ammendment was ratified on 1/16/1919 but repealed on 12/5/1933. This law was not very popular under the circumstances.
However, smoking is quite different from drinking alcohol. While some might argue that drinking a small glass of red whine (e.g. on a daily basis) may contribute to health, similar argument cannot be applied to smoking. By now, it is generally acknowledged that smoking is bad for our health. Also, enforcement is much easier for a smoking ban than alcohol ban. The smell of the smoke would simply give away the smoker. It is easy to catch this type of stuff.
So if the anti-smoking campaign keeps moving forward, perhaps we will (in a distant future) be able to enjoy a smoke free environment.