Vaping News

The Ecig Challenge in North America

Vapers in the USA and Canada continue the struggle.

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“Prevention and protection” is the mantra trotted out by public health officials on both sides of the Atlantic. Free choice doesn’t enter into it when it comes to the war on nicotine, the new health terrorist to be labelled with irrational fears. If vaping can’t be banned then those who know better than us push for punitive taxes – all to better our health.

Canada’s plan for bans took a well-reported set back as the Ottawan Board of Health voted to hold off implementing restrictions on the use of electronic cigarettes. It followed on from widespread protests and lobbying carried out by the motivated vaping community. But how long will the delay stay in place when complaints are as loud as they are inane?

“We're disappointed,” said Carmela Graziani, an asthma sufferer who spoke to the board prior to their vote. She told them how her attacks could be triggered by second hand tobacco smoke – even if it doesn’t contain smoke or tobacco! “The public wants protection. The science is there. We know these … products, the second hand vapour and second hand smoke from water pipes … is harmful.”

“Our next steps in terms of that is to write letters to the province and the federal government, indicating that these are some of the gaps that they need to be addressing,” added Gillian Connelly, representing Ottawa’s Public Health Department. In other words, she doesn’t have confidence in doing a ban herself so she’s going to demand the government bans it across the nation.

Guy Bentley reports that similar ignorance is fuelling debate south of the border, in the States. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, chairperson of the Democratic National Committee, stepped up with this beauty: “The reality of this [vaping] industry, the purpose of the development of this product, is to keep people addicted to nicotine and then to raise to bring up another generation of children who will be addicted to nicotine and will become addicted to nicotine in a much more benign way because of how these products are marketed.”

The one-woman quote machine rarely takes the trouble to make her pronouncements remotely informed and some are getting tired of it. “It’s a shame that out-of-touch politicians like Debbie Wasserman Schultz don’t have the capacity to engage in a 21st-century debate about the most significant advancement in public health in decades,” said Americans For Tax Reform’s Paul Blair. “She might learn something that wasn’t in her morning talking points from the anti-science quit-or-die crowd whose holier than thou attitude doesn’t align with reality and stands to kill jobs and harm public health.”

Why bother with facts and research when we could simply make stuff up too, like Schultz, Connelly and Graziani? We could tell politicians: “vaping saved my family from a dinosaur attack” or “my home was being burgled but one toke of my caramel vape sent the bounders running straight to the police.”

Dave Cross avatar

Dave Cross

Journalist at POTV
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Dave is a freelance writer; with articles on music, motorbikes, football, pop-science, vaping and tobacco harm reduction in Sounds, Melody Maker, UBG, AWoL, Bike, When Saturday Comes, Vape News Magazine, and syndicated across the Johnston Press group. He was published in an anthology of “Greatest Football Writing”, but still believes this was a mistake. Dave contributes sketches to comedy shows and used to co-host a radio sketch show. He’s worked with numerous vape companies to develop content for their websites.

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