The Vape Ban

September 19, 2019


Photo Credit: Ella Castellano/Achona Online/Piktochart

“I think the ban is a bad idea. Although teens vaping is a big issue, there are people who actually use the flavored e-cigarettes to help their addiction. If they ban all flavors other than tobacco, I feel like people will begin to turn back to cigarettes, which is ultimately worse,” said Kate Cohen (‘21).

For years, parents, law makers, and authorities have been warning about the ramifications of vape use, and on September 10 officials announced there to be 6 vape related deaths. In direct response, the Trump Administration has readied a ban on flavored e-cigarettes that have been attracting teens and causing sickness among users across the nation. 

Since electronic cigarettes were first introduced to the United States 12 years ago in 2006, health officials have been cautioning the general public about the dangers of these untested devices. In 2009, the FDA issued a press release stating concerns about how e-cigarettes are marketed toward teens, lack proper health warnings, and contain carcinogens and toxic chemicals such as diethylene glycol (one of the ingredients used in antifreeze). Although there were many concerns publicized in regards to vaping, usage continued to rise, naming the issue an epidemic. 

Even with the continuous forewarnings, it wasn’t until August 23, 2019 when concerns began to flood social media feeds and news stories. On this day, Illinois officials announced the hospitalization and death of a person due to a severe mysterious lung illness. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there are currently about 193 cases in 22 states of this unknown illness affecting people’s lungs. The victims of vape related illnesses have been sharing their stories in order to encourage teens and other users to quit. The Washington Post documented how the illness affected a man from Utah. In addition, Simah Herman’s post on Instagram to publicize her experience went viral.

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About 2 years ago i started having terrible nausea issues. that turned into being unable to eat, sleep and just live normally. 2 weeks ago i started having trouble breathing. it took 48 hours for my lungs to fail which led to me being put on a ventilator. This is all because of vaping. Vaping is advertised as “a healthier alternative to smoking” which is false. whether it’s nicotine or weed vaping can be fatal. I was lucky. the doctors didn’t think i was going to make it but with prayers from family and friends i pulled through after almost a week on a ventilator. No one thinks this will happen to them and neither did i which is why i kept vaping. It took less than 48 hours for me to be put in a drug induced coma and a tube put down my throat because i could no longer breathe on my own. The dangers of vaping are real and this can happen to you. Please don’t let it. It’s not easy to quit, nicotine is a very addictive chemical but the more you vape the more likely you are to end up where i did. take action and don’t let this happen. please tell your family and friends the dangers of vaping because no one realizes until they’re put in a situation so serious. i’m sharing my story so you don’t have to have your own. get help please and if you need someone to talk to i’m here to help anyone who needs it. Don’t let vaping win. take back your life and quit smoking. it’s just not worth it. @truthorange #bigtobacco #vapecommunity #smokingkills #dangersofvaping #dangersofsmoking #vape #juul (i didn’t end up having pneumonia. the signs of respiratory failure from vaping make it look like pneumonia, if they didn’t find that first i would have died)

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In a response to the constant increase in unregulated teen vape usage and the hundreds of people becoming sick due to this obscure lung illness, the Trump Administration announced that they would place a ban on the sale of most flavored electronic cigarettes. According to the health and human services secretary, Alex M. Azar II, in the next few weeks the FDA will draft a plan in order to withdraw from the market all flavored e-cigarettes and nicotine pods with the exception of tobacco products. 

“We can’t allow people to get sick. And we can’t have our kids be so affected,” said Donald Trump for the New York Times.

Academy student, Ashley Mackinnon (’20), agrees with the terms of this ban. “This issue with vaping among teens has been a problem for so long and if the ban passes I think it will help end the epidemic. So many people continue to be affected by e-cigarettes and I believe it’s so important that something is being done to address this problem.”

Although this ban may ultimately lead to a decrease in nicotine use within the population–making it beneficial–there are many views on this ban that are controversial. Obviously, vaping companies are not pleased with this because it means they will lose a majority of their revenue and make a significant impact on their brand. The American Vaping Association spoke out about this ban, stating, “A ban will remove life-changing options from the market that have been used by several million American adults to quit smoking,” according to NBC News. Others in the population are upset with this decision because they believe there are more pressing issues to deal with. 

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