Anti-smoking column went too far

February 5, 2011
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IBJ Letters To The Editor

I do not think I have ever read a more disgustingly disrespectful column as the one printed in the Jan. 24-30 issue, written by Bruce Hetrick.

How asinine to compare the heartrending attacks on a congresswoman and her visiting constituents to smoking a cigarette. How little regard you allowed him to show to these victims of a horrendous crime. Under no circumstances should his article have been allowed to see print. To take a tragedy and twist it through a metaphor to suit his personal view is inexcusable. IBJ should be ashamed.

Walking into a “tavern, casino, bowling alley, Legion hall, dance club and more” involves a choice by an individual. Seeing your congressperson at a rally, in the open air at a supermarket and being gunned down by a psychopath is a totally different circumstance. To make the comparison between a psychopath and a smoking establishment is a juvenile attempt at pushing the envelope.

I am very disappointed that the editor allowed this piece of rubbish to be printed. And I hope that no one associated with any innocent victims of the Tucson shootings ever sees this in print. There is never a reason to use such a totally unconnected tragedy for personal promotion or to promote personal ideals.

Hetrick should be glad he lives in a country where he has a personal choice of where he spends his time. I for one, hope he never enters an establishment where I am.

Cindy Barnes


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