Emily Henderson Feature Sep 16, 2019

Michigan regulates flavored vapes


At the beginning of this month, Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced her plan to place a ban on all flavored e-cigarettes after six people died due to vaping related illnesses.

While it is now well known that smoking cigarettes causes a slew of diseases, vaping is a relatively new phenomenon. Many researchers know the effect vaping has on the body, but there are still many people who believe the claim that vaping is better for you than the classic cigarette.

There is currently some controversy over the actual culprit. Some experts say that the true villain in this saga comes not from e-cigarettes, but illegal THC cartridges being smoked.

“There are a lot more pressing issues that affect a lot more people than the six people that have died, not through flavored vape, but through contraband THC cartridges,” said Ethan Zalac (‘22).

Many citizens are angered by this ban, feeling as though the government is attempting to stifle their freedom.

“I feel like it’s our citizens’ right to have if it’s legal, but at the same time, if it’s causing a lot of harm then it should probably be regulated,” said Chloe Sheler (‘21).

Not long after Governor Whitmer declared this ban, President Trump announced his plan to place a nation-wide ban on these products, deeming them unsafe for public use.

While these bans are being planned in the wake of recent deaths, the true reason behind them is simple — the fight to end teen vaping. Governor Whitmer turned to Twitter to back-up her recent ban.

“Right now, companies selling vaping products are using candy flavors to hook children on nicotine and misleading claims to promote the belief that these products are safe. That ends today,” wrote Whitmer.

Currently, this ban will last for six months, and at the end of this time another ban can be put into effect.

Some students feel as though there is a similarity between this state-wide ban and the ban that Alma College recently put into place, disallowing smoking on campus.

“It’s like when the college banned cigarettes. I think it’s [someone’s] legal right to be able to smoke. I don’t agree with it, per say; I think it’s very deadly, it could make you sick, but at the same time, it’s still their right to choose,” said Sheler.

While many citizens will now be forced to quit their vaping habit, it must be asked what will become of the stores that make most of their revenue from selling e-cigarettes, especially those with flavors.

“A lot of vape stores will probably go out of business,” said Mason Priest (‘21).

While some believe these stores will be forced to close their doors, others are already thinking about the avenues some of these businesses may be able to take. “They’re going to have to find another way to gain revenue. They’re going to have to find something more appealing that adults will like. Maybe, I know it sounds weird, but some adults would like wing flavors or maybe beer flavors,” said Sheler.

Others believe that these businesses may attempt to give this ban the run around.

“I’m sure they’re finding ways around this ban as we speak,” said Zalac.

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