Over half a mile long and a quarter mile wide, Cal State Fullerton is a sprawling and wide-open campus featuring mostly drab, Brutalist architecture. Landscaping is minimal, the walks between buildings are long, and as of yesterday this entire, expansive area, including surrounding parking lots and the beloved Arboretum, will be “100% Smoke-Free.” All ashtrays on campus have been yanked out and are being replaced with “No Smoking” signs.
Administrators are calling the policy “Directive 18,” and it's the first of its kind for Cal State institutions. They've somehow managed to fool themselves with the notion that banning smoking on campus will make more students and faculty quit, as opposed to make them anxious to get off campus and have a cigarette. One can only imagine what tenured faculty think of implementing this policy on a 56-year-old campus that once had a ton of naked hippies running around it.
Limiting smoking to designated areas, like at the neighboring Fullerton Junior College, is a much more balanced policy: not everyone smokes, so don't allow smoke everywhere. But banning smoking in someone's personal vehicle that is parked in a lot on campus is excessive. And it's not just cigarettes either, it's all “tobacco” products. That means chewing tobacco and e-cigarettes, the latter containing no actual tobacco whatsoever.
Yet with all these announcements and feigned excitement over becoming a smoke-free campus, CSUF states on their website that the policy will not be enforced by campus police. No, instead of getting a ticket, CSUF is hoping that the policy will instill some kind of social responsibility on the community that will lead to students or faculty confronting rule-breakers themselves. They've even put up a form online where concerned parties can report a smoking violation and attach photos that they creepily took with their camera phone.
This vigilante, no-smoking enforcement idea is growing though, as UC Berkeley plans to implement a very similar policy on January 1 2014. Natasha Hanna-Scott, a Conservation student at Berkeley is absolutely dreading the change. “I'm at school for 10 hours some days, and you're telling me I'm going to have to fucking walk-off campus for a smoke break?,” she complains, adding that it's often unsafe for girls to walk off campus at night.
The rule will undoubtedly be broken in sizable numbers across CSUF and Berkeley, especially because both campuses are so huge and even hundreds of virtual hall monitors couldn't fully patrol them. But administrators see it as a future trend. The Dean of Students at CSUF, Lea Jarnagin, Ed.D, told the Daily Titan last year, “Since I don't have a crystal ball, it's hard for me to project, but I would not be at all surprised [if more schools and establishment adopted no-smoking policies],” said Jarnagin. “It's never without pain, though… change is coming.”