New Year Bans
IMAGE SOURCE: Wikimedia Commons/ no smoking sign/ author: pmox
A number of newly imposed bans are being put into place this week aimed at dangerous and unhealthy behaviors including artery-clogging trans fats, texting while driving, as well as smoking in public.
2010 smoking ban for bars and restaurants in North Carolina - The nation’s largest tobacco producer, which has long benefitted from Big Tobacco, has generally been one of the last states to recognize the public health concerns of secondhand smoke.
Beginning January 2, North Carolina bars and restaurants will have to comply but country clubs and lodges will be the exception, reports ABC News. North Carolina joins 28 other states and bars in 24 other states with bans.
A dozen states have laws requiring cigarette makers to make cigarettes less likely to start fires. Wyoming is the only state without such laws, according to the Coalition for Fire-Safe Cigarettes.
Texting while driving – Banned in New Hampshire, Oregon and Illinois, according to the Associated Press.
In all, 19 states will ban texting while driving, while six states prohibit even using hand-held cell phone while driving. The Governors Highway Safety Association lists state laws.
Toy Guns – A new Arkansas law bans retailers from selling toy guns that look like the real thing. Plastic guns are made for use in theater productions and other events are exempted, reports ABC News, as are paintball, pellet guns as well as BB guns.
Trans Fats - Trans fats are those highly saturated fats added by manufacturers to give a creamy taste (peanut butter) to foods. California will become the first state banning the use of trans fats in restaurants this year. Several major cities, such as New York, as well as fast-food chains have prohibited the use of the artery-cloggers.
Baked items including yeast dough and cakes will be allowed to use trans fats until January 2011.
Other bans include:
- Dog races will be outlawed in Massachusetts.
- Anti-paparazzi law will take place in California making it easier for celebrities to sue media outlets.
- Teens going to tanning beds in Texas will have to be accompanied by an adult.
- In New Hampshire gay couples can get a marriage license replacing a law that allows for civil unions. Conservatives have targeted the law. #