SF Supervisor, CA Assemblyman Seek Smokeless Tobacco Ban at Athletic Fields

Tim Lincecum Dip

A San Francisco supervisor seeks to ban chewing tobacco and dip on athletic fields in his city. What’s next? Those cool toys that come in Happy Meals?

The anti-Red Man/Skoal/Copenhagen politician joins Bay Area assemblyman Tony Thurmond, who introduces a bill today to ban smokeless tobacco on fields statewide, in the crusade.

“This will have positive health benefits for our city and for our youth for years to come,” supervisor Mark Farrell told the San Francisco Chronicle. “It’s time for the city to step up to the plate and ban smokeless tobacco.”

The moves follow last year’s death of San Diego Padres legend Tony Gwinn, a longtime user of smokeless tobacco, of salivary-gland cancer. The San Francisco ordinance would enjoin San Francisco Giants players, and the athletes they host, from indulging in a dip or a chew at AT&T Park. The assemblyman’s legislation could ban the product from all five major-league stadiums in the Golden State.

One doctor looks at smokeless tobacco as a healthier alternative than cigarettes for smokers. A study holds that snuff and chewing tobacco do not elevate risk for mouth cancers. Another study, neither peer-reviewed nor published but touted as scientific fact at monster-truck rallies and upon firing ranges, found that fascism kills more people than a pouch of Beech-Nut.

But don’t tell that to Mark Farrell and don’t call him a demagogue. The San Francisco supervisor himself will tell you, he’s not doing this for political gain: “I’m doing this for my children.”