A Smokin' Hot Debate
There seems to be a battle brewing on campus.
This time the victor won't be determined by waiting for the smoke to clear. The smoke exactly is causing the battle.
Another debate has stirred up involving the current smoking policy on campus and the future of it.
Although the students who choose to smoke may already feel alienated and troubled to have to walk to one of four edge-of-campus distances to get their fix between classes, there may be more to come. This may in actuality be the beginning of the end for on-campus smoking.
Whether these changes are punitive or beneficial, no one is quite sure how the entire smoking community will react to them.
"Smokers are people too...I'm sure the faculty smokes," Vartan Duvengian, a general studies student, said.
Smokers often complain that traveling to designated areas makes them late to class.
Some non-smoking students may also feel uncomfortable about the smoking areas getting closer to campus.
Even though cosmetically it might make the school look more appealing to a certain demographic.
Non-smokers prefer not to walk through smokers to attend class, but it doesn't really matter, SMC student Xavier Whately said.
The Corsair spoke with Lance Simpson, currently chairing the Environmental Affairs Committee, which is represented at the school's District Policy Adjustment Committee. This group is made up of the leaders of various groups on campus, from students to faculty.
It has been said that Santa Monica College wishes to end smoking on campus completely. However, this might not happen for a while. For now, the changes suggested will be less impact.
Of the four current smoking areas, two are proposed for removal, one eliminated, and the last will stay in place.
First, a covered smoking area will be suggested for the head of 17 St. and Pearl Ave. This will replace both of the smoking areas near the language arts building. The designated area by the Pico Blvd. parking lot entrance might be eliminated. This area will be replaced by one on the north end of the library.
Since many students smoke where they please this probably won't cause too much uproar. It might take some getting used to by the diligent students who practically memorized the route to all the smoking areas.
The DPAC will meet next week and the Environmental Affairs Committee will propose these changes. Once these and other changes have been proposed the DPAC will vote on the matter to decide whether it goes into effect or not.
Even if this does pass through the DPAC the college president, Dr. Chui L. Tsang, gets the final say in the matter. Ultimately the choice is Tsang's, regardless of how any of the committees vote.
Whatever the reasons and whatever the price, it's a new day for smokers on campus whether there are changes or not, they will be in the works.
Smokers, get your butts in line or else.