Waiting for Evidence, or Banning Now?

You may have noticed lately that there is suddenly a campaign against vaping. It’s stupid, unnecessary, and unwarranted. But that never stopped people who want to control you. Paul Mirengoff at PowerLine reminds us:

Consumption of cigarettes is the leading cause of preventable death in this country. David Abrams, a professor at New York University’s College of Global Public Health, estimates that 1,300 people die from smoking every day. The life expectancy of a cigarette smoker is said to be a decade less than someone who has never smoked.

Vaping is a method of taking in nicotine, via e-cigarettes, that unlike smoking cigarettes, does not involve the intake of tar. And it is tar that causes the cancer that produces death. If cigarette smokers switch to vaping, they are far less likely to die from the habit.

Already smokers’ lives are in the process of being saved, thanks to vaping. Its advent has led to a significant reduction in the consumption of cigarettes.

Recently, however, there have been half a dozen vaping-related deaths, and a significantly larger number of vaping-related hospitalizations. This development, coupled with concerns that teenagers are becoming addicted to vaping (a concern I discussed here), has led to serious attempts to curb, if not eliminate, the practice.

That is spot on. I know this, back in 2013, I switched from smoking to vaping, within weeks I quit coughing, and much of my endurance came back. The surprising thing is that I also find that I can go far longer without vaping than I could smoking. I perhaps vape a bit more heavily than I should, but I was smoking 2 and sometimes more packs of filtered cigars a day. A huge improvement, and everybody I know that has made the switch says much the same.

Adam Mill at The Federalist adds this:

Vaping, we are told, is not an overall benefit to public health because it draws its customers from non-smokers. This is a lie. The real outcry is a result of the fact that vaping poses an existential threat to the tobacco industry’s business model. Sales of cigarettes declined 11.2 percent in May 2019. This follows 18 consecutive months of decline in tobacco sales.

You might also note, as I do, that much more than half the price of a pack of cigarettes is tax, Federal, state and local. So who is hurt most by the reduction in cigarette sales? Why does New York worry more about cigarette smuggling than they do gun smuggling? Very good. I knew you could figure it out.

Steven Greenhut at The Spectator chimes in as well.

[Banning alcohol because:  kids] Lawmakers never propose that “solution” because it’s wrong to punish all adults for the actions of a small number of them who provide liquor to teens. Some products — alcohol, tobacco, and guns, to name a few — are meant for adults only. Our society can never completely keep such things out of the hands of underage people who want them, but the sensible approach is to enforce laws that ban their sale to and possession by youngsters.

When it comes to vaping products, however, such good sense often is ignored. Various cities, especially in liberal enclaves in the San Francisco Bay Area, have passed new laws that would ban the sale of flavored nicotine products such as menthol cigarettes and flavored e-cigarette liquids. Now Michigan and New York have banned the sale of flavored vaping products — and the Trump administration is using the Food and Drug Administration to ban flavored e-cigarettes. […]

“The role of flavored vape products in the current outbreak is unknown at this time,” reports National Public Radio. “Some lawmakers and public health advocates have been pushing for flavored vape products to be banned since flavors first entered the market, out of a concern that they appeal to children. The timing of the recent move to ban flavored vape products may be linked to the current public concern about overall e-cigarette safety.”

This is clearly a case of those who oppose vaping in general using the latest crisis as a means to create a banning frenzy. It’s reminiscent of the way that anti-gun legislators use gun-related violence to promote “emergency” policies to ban things they want to ban anyway. It’s disturbing to see President Trump, whose administration has been largely immune to hysteria-driven public-health campaigns, jump on the bandwagon.

Yep, and it’s also noteworthy that the people that died were all, according to reports, not vaping either tobacco flavored or other flavored vaping liquid. The were vaping a marijuana-derived substance called THC. Which is already illegal. Maybe instead of banning things, we should enforce the law. Just a thought.

Preferably before I have to go back to smoking and shortening my life even more.

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