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Anti-Smoking Group: 'Nyack, Pass Smoking Ban'

Group asks village to eliminate smoking in Veterans' Park downtown

Denise Hogan has noticed that Veterans' Park in downtown Nyack often acts as a place for smokers to congregate and light up.

It's not a development she endorses—and one she hopes to change with legislation.

"It's a health issue and a role model issue," Hogan told Nyack officials late last week. Hogan went before local lawmakers , a state-funded coalition that aims to "decrease the social acceptability of tobacco use."

"In Rockland, most of the parks, pools and playgrounds are smoke free," Hogan continued. Nyack's Memorial Park has been cigarette-free for years, and the new baseball stadium in Ramapo axed smoking, as well.

Hogan likened walking around with a lit cigarette to strolling about with an open container of alcohol—an offense that can result in a court summons.

Her idea has the support of Richard Kavesh, Nyack's mayor, who said he would take it a step further and .

"I do think smokers have rights, but non-smokers also have rights," Kavesh said. "The right to fresh air outweighs the right... to smoke."

(In a Patch poll located below, 50 percent of readers said they would support a downtown-wide smoking moratorium as of Dec. 9. Read what business owners had to say .)

The next step in the process is running the idea past the village's parks commission. Jim Wilcox, a parks commissioner, said the department has yet to discuss the issue but will during coming meetings.

Wilcox also wondered what effect the ban may have. "Will we have more people hanging out smoking on Main Street?" he asked.

gene December 15, 2011 at 08:42 PM
Silk's concerned about Vets?? In 2000, the VA spent over $1 Billion a year treating tobacco-related disease --one legislator, Moran of VA, put the figure at $4 billion. You see, these fanatics say they 'support smokers' -- sure they do, until a smoker gets sick. Then he or she is cared for by the very organizations these activists insult, that very medical & scientific community they try to smear with their ugly accusations and disinformation.
Michael J. McFadden December 15, 2011 at 08:48 PM
Gene, I'll leave the "vilification" to Google. People are welcome to Google: McFadden AND Genebb and see the examples of my "spam" vs. your "on-topic" postings. They can try the same for "gene", "geneb", "genebbb" and your other handles as well if they like. Meanwhile we'll see if Samuel actually has some real science. - MJM
John Gromada December 15, 2011 at 09:46 PM
Yes it seems clear that all the people opposed to a potential ordinance are outside interlopers that have no connection to our community, and have organized in many places to defeat similar ordinances. You can see on their websites how this is an organized and methodical effort, using all sorts of strategies that we see in this thread. All that organization and effort does make you wonder who is funding it all.
JC Brotherhood December 15, 2011 at 10:21 PM
Actually John thats not completely true. I oppose this ban as well and I live a block away from you. First of all let me say that while I sincerely believe "if you can see it you shouldn't breathe it" I don't care what it is and have been an advocate in the film industry for safe forms of atmospheric effects in this regard (no more Oil Crackers please) for many years; I think a ban like the one that is being proposed is, if not actually unenforceable, it will add to an already clearly overburdened police presence in Nyack on the weekends specifically and all the time generally. Orangetown has enough on their hands and the Village has enough bigger problems than to waste time on a admittedly well-intentioned though misplaced initiative. I am arguing from a purely pragmatic point of view. The cops have a hard enough time policing the drunks, now we are going to add the smokers? Lets consider first the overall efficacy and how we would apply some standard metrics to interperet the future success or failure before we just jump on this bandagon. I am a recovered smoker by the way and I know how hard it is to kick this habit and nothing would ever convince me to smoke again. I really haven't seen any convincing data about second hand smoke out doors where there is a significant difference in the PPM between that and the same issue indoors or in an enclose area and I do support the current no smoking inside regulations.
Michael J. McFadden December 16, 2011 at 12:13 AM
Hello Pat. I don't usually link to my book site, despite Gene's constant carping on it, but to answer your question, at least about me, go to www.Antibrains.com and read the first two sentences of my Author's Preface. Then ask yourself whether they'd be there, in that position, if they weren't true. Additionally, you might like to see my response to a similar accusation put forward by a Mr. Repace as he engaged in one of GeneB's favorite passtimes: attempting to censor the opposition: http://greenbelt.patch.com/questions/why-dont-you-ban-tobacco-industry-spammers Gene is more skilled than Repace: he dances on the edge of libel while generally never quite crossing it. Someday he may find that a judge will rule on intent rather than detail. Audrey Silk is a retired Brooklyn Police officer. Like myself, she is completely open about her identity, not trying to hide behind a nickname like "Aud" or changing her handle from Aud to AudB to AudBB to get around webmasters. JohnE goes by several names and prefers to stay anonymous to the public for some reason, but I'm fairly sure he has no BigT connection either. How about you, "Pat" ? Care to be as honest as some of the folks you're dappling mud toward? - MJM
Michael J. McFadden December 16, 2011 at 12:20 AM
At least I post openly under my own name, "Pat," and people are indeed quite welcome to google me and check the validity of your claim that "paste" my material in. John, no funding at all actually: just people who don't like seeing bullies pushing other people around on the basis of lies. Tobacco Control gets hundreds of millions of dollars a year to spread around to communities like Nyack to promote smoking bans and taxes of various kinds. According to the AMA's Annual Tobacco Control Report the figure can go over 880 million in a single year. Unfortunately those of us on the other side can't dabble our fingers in that money pie: it comes from Big Tobacco you know: just laundered through the MSA. Oh, and if you'd like to see "organized and methodical strategies," I'd be quite happy to point you to at least a half dozen "guidebooks" on how to push smoking bans on people that would put any of the Free-Choice websites to shame as far as glitz goes. - MJM
Walt December 16, 2011 at 12:25 AM
Don't worry about Police enforcement, John and Pat want the law passed so they can patrol the park themselves and chase after smokers like a pair of angry geese.
Michael J. McFadden December 16, 2011 at 12:45 AM
Odd. The Patch software seems to think that those last two posts by "JohnE" have some connection to "Pat." See: http://nyack.patch.com/users/johne-b930826a Pat, I would guess that *that* sort of thing actually *is* against Patch rules. - MJM
Phil Konigsberg December 16, 2011 at 06:18 AM
Well said Mayor. According to ANR website there are currently 574 municipalities that have smokefree parks. NYC's parks are now a cleaner, healthier place since it's parks, beaches and pedestrian plazas became smokefree in May.
Walt December 16, 2011 at 02:21 PM
What kind of charade are you perpetrating Pat? Your sanctimonious comments in agreement with your alter ego have now been deleted. Your duplicity would be comical if it wasn't so sad.
Walt December 16, 2011 at 08:58 PM
Which proves my point. You are a sick, twisted individual who goes to great lengths to further your personal agenda and stamp on the rights of others.
Samuel B. Smith December 17, 2011 at 12:18 AM
I did some research on this Michael J. McFadden guy. He's a professional "pro-smoking" gadfly, paid by Big Tobacco. He has news search alerts for any news stories on "ban smoking" or "outlaw smoking". He then responds to all those stories, as he has been doing here on nyack.patch.com His goals appear to be promoting the sale of his book, promoting tobacco use, and promoting the interests of Big Tobacco.
Michael J. McFadden December 17, 2011 at 07:51 AM
Mr. Smith, you were unable to cite studies, but I believe you have just committed malicious libel. 1) As noted in my response to "Pat" above, a quick visit to www.Antibrains.com and a reading of the start of my book quickly reveals my lack of financial ties to Big Tobacco. 2) I do not have alerts on such stories, or I would be responding to far more of them (if I had time at least). I learn about most such stories via emails, through their general appearance in the news, or occasionally from searching for "smoking ban" within a discussion website such as Patch or City-Data 3) If my goal was to promote the sale of "Brains" there'd be far more effective ways of doing it than simply signing my name as author when first posting in a thread and then continuing on, in some cases for a good number of hours, researching, writing, and posting further responses in the thread signed only as MJM. 4) I've made thousands of net posts over the years, but you'll be hard put to find many that could be correctly characterized as "promoting tobacco use." 5) If I was promoting the interests of BigT I wouldn't support as e-cigarettes or oppose FDA oversight (which PM lobbied for), the MSA (the "Master Settlement Agreement" where BigT got off the hook and *smokers* were forced to pay the government), or the SCHIP 2,000% tax increase on Roll Your Own tobacco. See: http://pro-choicesmokingdoctor.blogspot.com/2009/07/obama-in-bare-faced-lie.html - MJM
John Gromada December 17, 2011 at 04:21 PM
The lady doth protest too much.
Michael J. McFadden December 17, 2011 at 07:38 PM
The lady (gentleman actually) doth protest exactly the amount that is needed JG. - MJM
Audrey Silk December 19, 2011 at 10:42 AM
Richard Kavesh, NO freedom is too small that it's to be "prioritized." You insult servicemen and women everywhere. One marine fighting in Afghanistan who was shot in the head and was smoking a cigarette 15 minutes later told me: "By all means use the photo, I'm all for smoker's rights. I'll be happy when I can smoke in a bar again." -- Sgt Paul Boothroyd
Audrey Silk December 19, 2011 at 10:49 AM
Gene, IF I get hurt or sick for ANY reason, I'm being treated by a doctor --not some "organization" -- who chose this as his profession. No different than a car mechanic when my car breaks down. It's who a human being goes to and pays for as dictated by the particular service needed. They might be Gods in your eyes but not mine. I expect them to do their job that they've chosen, period. I pay, they service. And spare me any talk about YOU pay for it as if no "smoker" (as you define as a group, not a person) has coverage or money.
Audrey Silk December 19, 2011 at 11:49 AM
For Gene debate = "harass." Debate = "spam." An opposing opinion is not allowed. Champions censorship based on geography and applauds those who censor for USUALLY no other reason than HE'S made a complaint. Never mind that we're all Americans and the right to free speech is in the UNITED STATES Constitution. Counters that we behave like we "can never be wrong" with "I am always right." Equates disagreement about science -- a discipline that is forever fluid, especially epidemiology that deals mostly with statistics -- with a denial about an event. Those he would pin that on would have to include many people from the noteable economist Walter E. Williams to the editors at the NY Post. Follows people around like a stalker. How else does he know where one posts? Unable to persuade us with argument (have you seen any?) he will bully and threaten us into submission. So what, pray tell, have you exposed, Gene? Except things about yourself.
Pat December 19, 2011 at 02:40 PM
You people need to realize that we will never stop imposing our demands on the majority by whatever means necessary. We simply know better than everyone else.
Michael J. McFadden December 19, 2011 at 11:47 PM
"Pat," as usual with Antismokers you don't understand the dynamic. A comment like yours directly above simply opens the door for me to point out absurdity of the "imposing our demands" claim when there is no one, anywhere, seeking to pass laws "demanding" that smoking be allowed everywhere. On the contrary, the only ones seeking to "impose demands" are the avowed Antismokers who will scream and holler if even the lowliest private club in the middle of a crack-infested slum on an island a hundred miles off the coast still allows for an airlocked "smokers room" in a building. No matter what word games or identity/spoofing games you folks play "Pat," you can't win this argument in a medium where people have the space to make equal and reasoned responses, where facts can be so easily and quickly referenced and checked, and where people can't dodge "inconvenient" questions by simply trying to run out the clock on a debate. Your arguments rest on falsely supported sound bites that are easily exposed, on claims about studies that don't actually show what you claim they do, and on lies about facts that can very easily be demonstrated to be lies in this medium. Which is why you hate the internet and seek to impose censorship in its various forms: either by leaning on webmasters, subverting search engines, or simply trying to destroy the communications threads with games like spoofing other people's identities or going off topic. - MJM
Pat December 20, 2011 at 02:26 AM
I do not like smoking and I will stop it. First in Veteran's Park, then in the downtown Nyack, then in Rockland County, then in NYS. The key is to having a couple of politicians on board by threatening to attack them as being against the children and the elderly if they do not condemn smoking. It's all so easy, especially when you know how to intimidate people who have an opposing viewpoint. Don't you see? I know what is best for everyone.
Michael J. McFadden December 20, 2011 at 11:19 AM
I see "Pat" can't even sign his/her own spoofed posts properly. "MLM" indeed. ::sigh:: And the clever twisting of my statement about Big Tobacco funding may have seemed clever when you wrote it "Pat," but it was actually a pretty bad move. Dragging in an innocent reviewer's name from my book page on Amazon, and misrepresenting yourself as her while plagiarizing simply adds another layer to what you've done here. - MJM
David Atherton December 20, 2011 at 04:46 PM
Please note that the late Alvan Feinstein was a skeptic on the harm of SHS and was quoting a colleague form the World Health Organization. On the 1993 EPA Report: “Yes, it’s rotten science, but it’s in a worthy cause. It will help us to get rid of cigarettes and become a smoke-free society”. - Alvan Feinstein, Yale University epidemiologist writing in Toxological Pathology. - Cited in Colby (1999) http://www.lcolby.com/colby.htm
Tim December 20, 2011 at 04:55 PM
Will you all stop now.....................
Kevin Zawacki (Editor) December 20, 2011 at 05:24 PM
Hi all, a reminder to read over Patch's Terms of Use (http://nyack.patch.com/terms) before commenting. Also, refrain from double posting; make your point in a single, pithy comment. You're more than welcome to respond to other folks once the conversation gets going, but if you add several consecutive posts in a row, they will be deleted.
gene December 20, 2011 at 07:22 PM
Huh?? This is a person who can't read, yet is out spamming msg boards to "enlighten" others. And look: he's come all the way from the UK to do it, too. He poured the same bilge on a KY board last week, and oh boy! it's NYers' turn now. (He knows all about the USA--he has a brother in San Francisco!) What WHO colleague?? Atherton cites Colby, but Colby said Feinstein was quoting a "prominent epidemiologist" (itself a loose reading). To be clear, Feinstein's actual quote from "Toxological Pathology" (Ath means Toxicologic Pathology, of course; relying on these campaigners to provide meaningful, accurate information is a mug's game) is: “In private conversation, I recently heard an authoritative leader in the world of public health epidemiology make the following statement: ‘Yes, it’s rotten science, but it’s in a worthy cause. It will help us get rid of cigarettes and become a smoke-free society.’” Atherton, Colby, et. al. mindlessly regurgitate this silly anecdote as if it had any weight whatsoever. It's one of their standard mantras--and it’s complete nonsense. Blinded by their dogma, they can't see that it's pure gossip, and unattributed at that. But they drag it out endlessly, and it's hearsay, a scurrilous rumor spread by a man who received huge amounts of tobacco $$ for over 4 decades. Feinstein was "a skeptic" on SHS? He's cited as part of the conspiracy for which tobacco was convicted in 2006, in a decision recently upheld by the US Supreme Court:
gene December 20, 2011 at 07:23 PM
"9. Racketeering Act No. 9: On or about November 23, 1965, defendant COUNCIL FOR TOBACCO RESEARCH did knowingly receive from the mails a letter addressed to Edwin J. Jacob, Esq., Cabell Medinger Forsyth & Decker . . . , counsel to CTR, from Alvan R. Feinstein . . . requesting funding for research on data indicating that the clinical effects of cancers were no worse in smokers than in nonsmokers. . . . "275. In 1990, the companies continued to jointly fund the work of Alvan Feinstein that had previously been funded as a CTR Special Project on behalf of the Enterprise." http://coop.dcd.uscourts.gov/99-2496-082006a.pdf Their PR about this "rotten science" quote is a sorry mess 20 ways from Sunday. But for these tireless, shameless campaigners, this drivel--misquoted, mis-cited and misrepresented-- is typical of their reading comprehension levels, their poor attention to detail, their penchant for partisan distortion and most of all their abysmal standards of “proof.”
gene December 21, 2011 at 06:46 AM
"I pay, they service" That's right, Audrey pays, got that? All by herself. Independently wealthy. No pension, no Federal or local "organization" is involved whatsoever. No one's taxes will ever go up to pay for her healthcare.
David Atherton December 21, 2011 at 12:50 PM
On a lighter note I am English and used to live in Westchester County opposite Nyack in Scarborough. I used to get the Hudson Line into Grand Central. I think Nyack is named after a local tribe of native Americans and a very pretty part of Upstate New York.
gene March 19, 2012 at 03:02 PM
McF: Someday he may find that a judge will rule on intent rather than detail Yea, when we get to Mind-Reading Court--which McF is an expert at, & can back up with just oodles of hard evidence, I'm sure--I'd like to see it take a crack at McF himself. Based on his distortions of plain ordinary msg board postings, I have no illusion that his ultimate purpose has anything whatsoever to do with truth or science. Silk: Of course a spammer defends spamming, but spam does NOT = debate. This is no "debate," it's a campaign, a full-on PR assault, & it's run exactly like any fanatical cabal: Birthers, 9/11 Plot fans, JFK theorists, Holocaust Deniers & (especially) Flat Earthers. They too would justify how they harass locals nationwide--because they're right, of course, always & all the time. And they'll cry "FREE SPEECH!" when exposed--despicably hijacking a concept people died for without the foggiest idea it doesn't mean yakking on your cell phone at the opera, or deluging innocent msg boards with your tripe. Where would local boards be if these groups descended on every story that mentioned JFK, or flying "around" the world? Useless. That's exactly what we have here. One thing to be said for Silk & her bugaboo, the heinous, oh-so-evil tobacco control--at least they don't engage in her kind of wholesale spam. They have something called ethics. They have morals.

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