Arizona State University will become a tobacco-free campus beginning next summer, but in protest and to raise awareness of the ban, one student-led group passed out cigarettes to students on the Tempe campus Wednesday.
“Their message isn’t that they want to protect other students; it’s to protect others from themselves,” said Carlos Alfaro, a senior majoring in economics and American history who is a part of Students for Liberty. “They’re trying to save society with what they think is correct. It’s the same thing with the war on drugs and same-sex marriage.”
Outside of the Memorial Union, the student union building which houses a number of student and faculty services, Students for Liberty checked IDs before passing out cigarettes to students.
“It’s not about health; it’s about freedom of choice,” Alfaro said. “Being an adult is all about making your own choices.”
While people understand that eating junk food is bad for them, it is not the place of the government to make personal decisions about someone’s body, Alfaro said. To demonstrate the analogy, Students for Liberty also passed out apples and bananas in juxtaposition to doughnuts and chips.