The other day I was listening to WJR 760, the local Detroit talk radio, the show was the Mitch Album show and the topic was companies that fire smokes. The interview itself was very calm, but the post call in, at times got very heated. The question that caused all the heat, “Do companies have a right to fire smokers?” My simple answer, yes they do…. But…
The but in this answer is very big, in fact its huge… As a person who believes in free enterprise and the ability of people and companies to control their destiny. Companies should have the right to decide who should represent them, be it smokers or nonsmoker. But this rule should also hold true for other attributes, such as size, faith, or any other attribute. If, for example I owned a Catholic company or school or hospital, I should have the right to only hire Catholics in good standing. Or if I run an airline, I should have the right to hire only stewards the represent what I want to present my company as. If that is thin beautiful woman, than that’s what I should be allowed to hire.
The fact that several companies will not hire smokers (Source) is a corporate decision, one made to help lower health insurance coast, increase profits and promote a healthy life style. Fine, I’m good with that… As a smoker (well currently a nonsmoker) I good with that, they have the right to decide whom they want working and representing them. So if Delta Airlines decides they no longer want to hire anyone whose weight is over a certain level, to save fuel, promote a healthy life style, than they should have the same right as the companies that fire smokers. If a Catholic hospital wants to hire only Catholics in good standing, to promote the catholic faith, and wants to lower health insurance coast by not covering birth control and abortion, than they should have the same rights as the companies that fire smokers.
The right of privet companies should be respected across the board. The right of a restaurant to bad age groups (Source) should also be respected. We should not allow some rules but not others, fair is fair, to use a liberal phrase. If a company make a bad decision, and offends to many people, they will do one of two things, they will either change or they will close down, it’s that simple. The free market will correct the system, as long as the system is allowed to work.
The problem is, the rules are not fair, and the liberals are picking and choosing what is good for you and what is good for corporations. The problem is, we are not allowing the free market to be free. We are regulating the market, holding it back and creating a false market. A market that is pushed and prodded to follow along a path of socialism. A system of the government telling you what is best for you. Yes I know the government is not forcing companies to fire smokers, but they are forcing Catholic institutions to hire non-Catholics and Delta to hire heavy-set stewards. And give the government time, and they will require companies to hire only non-smokers. Trust me on this, with Obamcare coming, to save money, drive down health care, they will force Americans to quit smoking. Is that a bad thing? Health wise, no, we all know smoking is bad for you, but liberty wise, Hell ya its bad…. What would be next? Drinking? Read Meat? Sugar? Salt? Think not… (Source) Or how about the size of your TV (Source). The government has not right to interfere in your personal life. They tried it with prohibition (Source), it didn’t work to well.
So, does a company have the right to fire smokers…. Sure it does, as long as a company has the right to fire fat people or to fire non-Catholics or anyone else that does not represent that company’s views. Fair is fair.