Fighting for our Rights!!!
January 11, 2006
Hello everyone. As you can see I am no longer just Joe Bolduc, bar owner and rabble rouser, but now have an official (well almost, a few more papers to file) lobbying association. As the state hospitality association is hesitant to fully join the fight, I decided to form my own group. It also gives me greater standing in seeking meetings with government officials, filing in court, and access to public forums.
KANSAS REPORT, 01/11/06. Kansas Business Rights Association.
Samantha (from the Smokers Club) and everyone, thought I'd drop you a note regarding the state of affairs here in Kansas.
Smoke Ban hearing in Lansing.
Professionalism: It looks and comes across as much more professional than just getting up there and ranting for ten minutes. Attention Grabbing: I suspect many of you have been through the same thing as me, you're spilling your heart out and two or three board members are busy writing or reading something, apparently not paying any attention to you. With a graphic presentation, they HAVE to look up, at least once in awhile. They certainly can't use the excuse that “I'm listening”. It's easier to make counterpoints: You can list each of the pro-ban arguments with a corresponding counter argument right next to it. Makes for a a stronger impact, more relevance, a better “connection”. It's a video world: Just as reading is in decline, so to is the art of verbal conversation, and listening. People are conditioned to viewing information, not hearing it.
For those of you who are among the many who possess the bare necessity of computer skills, this isn't as difficult as you would think. Programs like Microsoft's Powerpoint pretty much walk you through the process with templates and wizards. Those of you with teenage children could just have them do it :).
Anyway, back to the ban hearing. I am not overly concerned at this point about them imposing a ban. Two of the city councilors were outright antagonistic towards the young man and I was able to refute all his points. If looks could kill, his cheering section would have shot me several times over. Another plus for our side is that some of the councilors, and the Mayor, are smokers, not to mention they are an older group. The ban has been referred to a study group where if we have our way it'll die. If they do do anything, it'll be awhile and it would be to pass one that is inactive till a certain number of surrounding communities enact a ban.
RADIO SHOW: (or: I risk major public embarrassment)
Despite my nervousness and lack of skill at public debate I hope I did our side some good. The feedback I got from people who listened was mostly positive. I haven't listened to it yet- it's posted on KCUR. I'm afraid to listen to it myself. Something that came as a bit of a shock was one of the documents the doctor was referring to was the article I sent in to the Smokers Club last month regarding court arguments. Samantha, you are apparently making enough waves that you are now on their radar. While we never got the chance to discuss it, he took issue with my figures, noting that I had understated the population. In that he was somewhat correct as I did state metro area when I was using only Johnson County figures. The actual metro area population is about 1.6 million, not 500,000. I stand by the rest of the figures though. I would have liked to have discussed this but for some reason, perhaps work issues, or perhaps I'd annoyed him (I know I pushed his buttons a few times), the doctor was gone as soon as the show ended. All in all it was an interesting experience that I wouldn't hesitate to do again. I have a better understanding of how such a forum works and will hopefully be able to do better the next time. I'm already actively pursuing the next chance. I feel that rather than keep a low profile as the local hospitality association apparently prefers, I feel it's important to fight back in public forum, to show the electorate just how much they are being manipulated. The anti's have held the stage too long, it's our turn now. People, stand up and be counted, be public.
LAWRENCE MEETING AND SOME LAW THOUGHTS:
It was while looking over arguments for Dennis's cases that I came across an interesting premise. It's from a case that can make or break a Supreme Court appointee, Roe v. Wade. Contrary to what is generally thought, that case did not directly address abortion but an individuals right to choose a course of action. The court stated in essence that despite the benefit or cost to society, the individuals rights must take priority over all others. Now doesn't that sound familiar. Somebody correct me if I'm wrong but local courts are making anti-ban plaintiffs argue the constitutional aspects of their complaint when it appears it's already been argued. And decided. You lawyers out there, correct me if I'm wrong but does this not essentially supersede a local authorities power to inhibit our rights by restricting an otherwise legal activity, that our rights supersede any perceived benefit or cost to society that may be argued as supporting such an ordinance? Especially in the case of smoke bans where there is no definitive, justifiable, repeatable proof or reasoning for such restrictions? That's all for this month from Kansas. I look forward to hearing your comments.
Thanks, Joe Bolduc.
Thanks Joe, Glad you're on our side.
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