Banning electronic cigarettes will not solve the teenage health crisis


Joel C. Bautista | The Ticker

Gavin Kowlessar

The mysterious lung injuries will increase drastically as a result of this. This will allow the black market to further expand. 

The profit incentives of this lucrative market will attract more organized crime and the inevitable violence that comes with it. As for the consumers unwilling or unable to participate in the black market, they will simply go back to smoking traditional combustible cigarettes which will inexorably lead to a rise in lung illnesses as well. 

As an alternative solution, lawmakers should wait and let the Food and Drug Administration and CDC do their job and figure out what chemical component of legal vapes is actually causing these illnesses. When these chemicals are found they should be banned immediately.

No minor should be smoking anything, especially because the nicotine or THC found within vape cartridges can harm the brain and lungs while they are still developing. The government should prevent teenage use by heavily fining and shutting down black market businesses that sell and market e-cigarettes to minors. 

The key strategy here is education and support as opposed to criminalization and antagonization of both young and old victims suffering from addiction. If the war on drugs has taught us anything, it’s that the brute force method of criminalization does not protect the American people, it simply fattens the revenue streams of law enforcement agencies and private prisons.