Vaping Epidemic

Andres Mauries, Staff Writer

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In the time we live in there is almost no way you haven’t heard of or even had a personal run-in with electronic cigarettes (vapes). This can be attributed to the heavy presence of vaping related news in politics and the media. Along with this growing media presence, teenagers have started to become regular users and have even turned to the distribution of vapes and vape juice as a source of income. A scary fact that not all teenagers have grasped onto yet is the number of deaths and illnesses closely related to vaping. So far to date, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has counted at least 380 cases of vaping related illnesses across 36 states and a total of 7 deaths with the latest one being reported on September 17th, 2019 after his frequent usage of vape related products. Many teenagers share the idea of “what are the chances it could happen to me” because it can be hard to imagine something bad happening to you until it’s too late and no imagination is needed anymore.

The United States government is considering putting a heavier tax on vape related products and in some states even banning all sweet or “funky” flavors in order to limit and discourage underage children from being pressured into purchasing and ultimately becoming addicted at a young age where their minds are significantly more impressionable and underdeveloped than that of a full-grown adult. Some of the states that have already or have just recently put in place this special tax on vape related products are as follows: California, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Kansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Vermont, Washington, and West Virginia. The fate of vaping and the people who vape is not yet set in stone and has room to drastically change over the course of the next couple of weeks and months. With this uncertainty comes a great deal of chaos in the form of people frantically trying to buy as much vape juice as they can before the “changes” or people forming bad opinions of the government because of misconceptions and rumors. When someone has something they love taken away, who is to say what they will stop at to get it back.