OXFORD, MS (abc24.com) - Smokers are fired up over Ole Miss' campus wide ban on lighting up. The school went smoke-free in August, but those told to put out their cigarettes are nowhere close to embracing the new policy. Students are protesting, signing petitions and still smoking.
"You can still see them walking around campus smoking cigarettes," says Sam Morrison.
Our cameras caught Brandon Davis mid-smoke. "I mostly go off campus, but I've got a class right over here." Davis says he'll take his chances on getting caught. Ole Miss doesn't start handing out $25 fines until January.
"They're not supposed to be giving tickets right now," he says. "All they're giving are warnings."
From blatant disregard to organized protests and petitions, those against the ban are speaking up.
"Last Friday we had the smoke out in the Grove," says Aldon St. Mary. "If it's legal to smoke and it's a public university, I don't understand." He calls it a big inconvenience.
"You now have to go hide from people and make sure you're not seen by the UPD or go off campus and smoke." He'd like the school to bring back designated smoking areas.
'I'd be completely happy with that," he says.
"Nobody really used them and smoked where they weren't supposed to," says Trey Warnock. "But I'm not a smoker myself so I'm kind of biased."
Even students who support the ban, though, can sympathize.
"It's like controlling air rights," Warnock says.
"You're outdoors," says Veazey Powell. "It's harder to ban people who smoke outside." Especially on the weekends, the school has got its work cut out during Ole Miss football games.
"There's not really a way to monitor 60,000 people," Morrison says. "The older guys on Saturday, they enjoy their cigarettes."
So far the university hasn't budged, but the battle looks like it's to be continued.