When it comes to letting the government watch out for public safety, some things are off-limits for Americans. A new survey shows that while 62 percent of US adults think there should be a national ban on smoking in public locations, only 38 percent support a ban on cell-phone use while driving, and 70 percent oppose a tax on nondiet soda.
Despite the fact that smoking, driving distractions, and soda all pose health risks, Americans seem to single out smoking as a vice not protected from government control. And while drinking soda has a personal impact, driving on a cell phone and smoking both pose risks to innocent neighbors. Perhaps the distinction has something to do with the fact that the majority of Americans do not smoke, while many people do drive and drink soda.
Many things could be (and are) regulated in the name of public and personal safety. So what do you think makes Americans all right with banning smoking in public, but not other dangerous activities?