As shocking as it is ridiculous, this ban will officially take effect within San Francisco city limits in April 2018. This outcome is jaw-dropping, to say the least. All of us vapers have been left in a state of shock, raising many questions such as: Why did they approve this? Why did the city even put this up for debate? How will this affect local vape shops? Is this setting a precedent for other cities to follow?
According to CNN, the new city ordinance states "flavored tobacco products promote youth initiation of tobacco use." This statement has been up for debate for awhile, but what San Fran city officials neglect to realize is that E-LIQUID DOESN’T CONTAIN ANY TOBACCO WHATSOEVER. Yes, e-juice flavors may contain nicotine, but nicotine can also be derived from certain foods we eat, such as eggplants, potatoes, tomatoes, green and black teas, cauliflowers, and certain peppers. Have there been any bans or laws in general against said foods? Of course not.
Supervisor Malia Cohen claimed at the board hearing, “We are not looking to put small stores out of business. We want to help them make this transition from selling a poisonous commodity to selling something that will benefit the neighborhood.”
We know all of you are shaking your head because this is exactly what this city-wide ban will do to vape shops. Only a fraction of vapers strictly vape tobacco-flavored juices and those that are vaping these flavors are doing it to quit smoking. If the city’s main goal is to lower the numbers of smokers and potential smokers, shouldn’t they be encouraging smokers to seek out safer alternatives?
Vaping has been proven over and over to be a safer alternative to the stinkies, hell, some hospitals in the UK are even allowing for vaping to take place on hospital grounds. Here’s a direct quote on the subject from Dr. Stephen Fowlie, the medical director for Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust: “We have a duty to help our patients and staff make healthy lifestyle choices and we can’t ignore the potential benefits of electronic cigarettes as a nicotine replacement therapy. We’re now allowing e-cigarettes on our grounds to give patients, staff, and visitors more choice in how they quit smoking.”
We could continue to slam you with facts about vaping-related studies, but obviously, this is something that the San Francisco City Board of Supervisors needs to dive into themselves. Banning flavored e-liquid will just cause vapers that love their fruit, cereal, dessert, and drink flavored juices to desperately look elsewhere outside of city limits to find what they need. Or an even worse scenario, some vapers will venture back over to smoking as they become dissatisfied with strictly tobacco-flavored e-liquid. Seems a bit counterproductive right?
Not to mention the fact that civic governments in the United States are supposed to help grow and support businesses as they provide jobs and drive commerce within the city limits. This is clearly an anti-business move.
Luckily, as part of an immensely large vaping community, we have organizations to back us up in the fight against the San Francisco Flavor Ban! Here are some links to get involved and make a difference:
Let your voice be heard, especially in your local community. No one wants to see flavor bans like these become a common occurrence across the country.
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