Last September, the FDA carried out a combined video/poster campaign which made vaping look like an incredibly cool horror film, dubbed “Vapeworms” by tobacco-harm reduction campaigners. The latest offering proves that Gottlieb and Adams know as much about kids as they do about vaping.
One poster screams: “A NICOTINE-FREE VAPE IS NOT A WORRY-FREE VAPE”
Another blares: “IF YOU DON’T THINK VAPING IS ADDICTIVE, IT MAY HAVE ALREADY ALTERED YOUR BRAIN”
The information poster begins: “In the past year alone, vaping among high schoolers has increased 78%. How much do you know about the epidemic?”
“E-cigarettes, also known as ‘vapes,’ are becoming increasingly popular among teens. In fact, they are the most commonly used tobacco product among middle and high school students. You may have already seen or heard about students vaping in your school, but it is important to know that certain types of vapes can be used very discretely.”
Translation to kidspeak: ‘these things are really popular – and you aren’t doing it yet? Don’t worry about getting caught, they come in really easy to hide sizes.’
“A Big Problem...A SMALL DEVICE. Over 10.7 million youth aged 12–17 are at-risk for using e-cigarettes. Some teens report using e-cigarettes in school bathrooms and even in the classroom.”
Translation to kidspeak: ‘Worried about where to use your new vapes, kids? Pop to the toilets if you must, but some of your classmates are vaping in class and nobody can tell.’
“Learning more about the different types of e-cigarette products is an important first step in addressing youth vaping,” the FDA adds in its (apparently) ‘How To Start Vaping’ campaign.
The information the FDA is giving out couldn’t sell vaping harder if it tried:
- E-cigarettes come in a variety of shapes and sizes and may not look like a tobacco product, which can make them hard to spot
- Some devices popular among teens—like JUUL and myblu—are as small as a USB flash drive and even look like one
- Certain products emit very low amounts of aerosol or “vapor,” which makes them easier to use discreetly than combustible cigarettes
- Most e-cigarettes contain nicotine, the same highly addictive drug in cigarettes. Some e-cigarettes may contain as much nicotine as a pack of 20 regular cigarettes
New Nicotine Alliance’s Sarah Jakes commented: “This is so dumb it’s hard to shake the notion that FDA wants kids to vape so they can use them as an excuse to ban the entire category.”
Charles Gardner, Foundation for a Smoke-Free World, added: “Panic over #vapeworms and the claimed ‘epidemic’ may INCREASE under-age curiosity to try vaping, which none of us want. They're fanning the flame. Very frustrating. IMHO: Best way to reduce teen vaping would be to blanket social media with images of ex-smoking old farts vaping.”
Paul Blair, Director of Strategic Initiatives, agrees: “Just in case kids weren't inclined to rebel, the FDA just announced that it is sending posters like this to every high school in America. Tell me these won't encourage kids to experiment with ecigs.”
Jerome Adams has been claiming that he wanted to engage with and listen to vapers. This idiotic campaign proves that neither he nor Gottlieb have listened to a single word.
- FDA posters - https://digitalmedia.hhs.gov/tobacco/print_materials/search?utm_campaign=CTP%20News%3A%20Scholastic%20Posters%20-%2013119
- “Something Stinks in Gottlieb’s Toilet Campaign (Vapeworms)” - https://www.planetofthevapes.co.uk/news/vaping-news/2018-09-20_something-stinks-in-gottlieb-s-toilet-campaign.html