It's been ten years since you could smoke in public places in the state of Illinois.

I remember going out to the bars in Rockford to hang out with friends.

When I got home, my wife would immediately send me to the basement to remove my clothes that smelled like smoke. If I wanted to sleep in the bed, I would have to take a shower.

The smoking ban law in Illinois put in place ten years ago made my life a little bit easier.

For others, it didn't. If you were a smoker, you were forced to go outside no matter what the weather. Many decided it wasn't worth it, so they started partying at home.

The new smoking ban and the economy crash really hurt the bar scene with many closing. It didn't help that the new law went into effect on January 1st of 2008. Right in the middle of a tough Midwest winter. Giving people another reason to stay home.

The addition of gambling machines has helped several survive.

According to,

"Supporters of the smoking bans argued there would be massive health benefits to it."

The big question is, did it?

"Data does show an overall decrease in smoking in Illinois. Smoking has dropped from about 20 percent of adults to 15 percent between 2008 and 2017, with only two years, 2009 and 2012, showing an increase."

How do we compare to other states?

"Illinois also has shown the strongest decline in smoking compared to neighboring states."

How do you feel about it? Has your attitude changed about the law?


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