Wednesday 21 February 2018

Finian might want his ciggies indoors, but smoking areas are romance's ground zero

'Smoking areas offer a next stage, away from the dancefloor.' Photo: Jonathan Brady/PA Wire
'Smoking areas offer a next stage, away from the dancefloor.' Photo: Jonathan Brady/PA Wire

John Daly

It's enough to get one back on the smokes. In a country with hospital trolley and housing crises prancing like the horsemen in our own home-made apocalypse, this week's hoo-hah over fags did at least bring a bit of light relief to the corridors of Leinster House.

In a move that must have prompted others to fire up an unfiltered roll-up, Junior Health Minister Finian McGrath attempted to make a case for addicted smokers, who he said were "soft targets" and needed "more understanding" from non-smokers.

With his head on the block, he threw in an arm and a leg as well by further petitioning for designated areas in pubs and restaurants where the dark arts of dragging and puffing might be enjoyed. Sound man, Finian. There then followed a media firestorm. Who'd have thought?

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