Reflecting on the various issues that comes from vaping

Recently there have been multiple cases of illness and even death related to vaping.
As a result, a federal ban looms over the country that would prohibit the use of flavored e-cigarettes.
I know that there is a lung disease connected with those vapes and that the deaths experienced calls for action, but will this drive people back to cigarettes?
Tobacco e-cigarettes would not be affected by the proposed ban, and my concern is that if people traditionally turn to vaping as a way to not smoke cigarettes, it no longer serves as a deterrent.
Youths may even be more likely to turn to cigarettes because they come in multiple flavors with classics like Newports, Swisher Sweets and more.
Lawyers in North Carolina have stated that companies like Juul produce and market flavors that target younger generations specifically, so if the ban becomes enacted, those teens and young adults already addicted could be inclined to continue their habits using cigarettes.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released the statistic that about 480,000 people die each year from smoking cigarettes, yet the movement toward cigarette restrictions has been seemingly less progressive.
There is such a double standard being held up to these industries currently.
The ban would be issued as a way to protect people from the dangers of vaping and I am all for that, but if we were truly concerned about our country’s health, why is there no ban on cigarettes?
If they don’t turn to cigarettes, people might take another route and turn to the black market to continue their use of flavored vaping, which is arguably more dangerous than the current situation.
The black market could include cartridges that have different sorts of chemicals in them that are unlisted and potentially made in harmful, dirty conditions.
I think the decision to ban flavored e-cigarettes is very sudden and rash and there needs to be a little more thought and action put into the future of the smoking industry.
Although it is a good thing to be taking action so soon on this issue, the impact it will have is still unclear.
If we were to hold the cigarette industry to these same standards, we would be about 50 years late to saving our country from more deaths.
With most of these issues affecting a younger generation, it may be time to focus educating potential usres about these products with their intended uses and effects.
The way schools across the country cover this topic could be more uniform and although not a solution, it would allow teens to make more informed decisions.
It’s about time we act just as responsively to the textbook picture of a healthy lung versus a black-tar covered lung as we are to a news article reporting the sixth vaping-related death.

CHLOE FORBES
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