As Red so eloquently stated in Shawshank Redemption… “You Godda#m right!”
It is not so much that we are shocked by the actions and behavior of government agencies, agenda-driven politicians and shameful health groups who turn a blind eye to the crucially pertinent truth, but rather we are tired, tired of having the same strategic, soulless rhetoric spat in our faces despite the overwhelming evidence.
Truthfully, I feel like a broken record player, playing the same track over and over again. Having written numerous pieces on the alarming statistics related to traditional cigarettes, I find myself growing numb to the disheartening facts. But for the sake of disseminating the facts, I will once again quote the CDC in saying,
“…smoking is the leading cause of preventable deaths. Worldwide, tobacco use causes nearly 6 million deaths per year and current trends show that tobacco use will cause more than 8 million deaths annually by 2030.”
At the very core of us all, is the simple desire to live out a healthy life, to see the sunset, to be able to breathe in the cool autumn air, to be happy being healthy, yes? I’d like to think so.
Now, of course, we are imperfectly human, which means during the pursuit of this desired life, we will most definitely fall short at some point. We will lose sight of the path and perhaps find ourselves someplace altogether different. Perhaps we took up cigarettes and/or drugs and developed dependencies over time. We are human, it happens. But herein lies the problem. Over time, that once desired life grows fainter and fainter and we grow sicker and sicker held hostage by our dependencies, yearning for help… when the entire time, help existed, but sadly this help remains blocked behind a very thick monetary wall.
Truth be told, vaping is merely a slice of a very large bureaucratic pie where those in power, those in the highest branches of government, just aren’t sure when to allow us to take a bite out of a better life.
Just last month, the FDA commissioner, Scott Gottlieb announced new approaches to the fight to end smoking-related deaths. In addition to this announcement, Gottlieb granted much-needed relief to thousands of businesses that sell vaping products, by giving the manufacturers of these products an extra four years to complete a Pre-Market Tobacco Application (PMTA) with the FDA.
But sadly, just as quickly as a push for new methods to curb the damage brought upon by traditional cigarettes is introduced… promising momentum is abruptly pulled back when Gottlieb and the Center for Tobacco Products announced a new campaign focused on educating children about the dangers of e-cigarettes. Because after all, if the children are at risk then it must be bad.
Several weeks ago, I wrote a blog piece called, Flavor Sensitivity, about the real science behind the perceived scare associated with fruity flavored E Juice flavors. In it, I mentioned how Manhattan Assemblywoman, Linda Rosenthal, wanted to ban the sale of flavored e-cigarette liquids to curb teen vaping. According to Rosenthal, “bubble gum and strawberry flavored vapes appeal to kids.”
Why question campaigns to safeguard children? Simple. Because it addresses a nonexistent “epidemic” says Brian Fojtik of the Reason Foundation.
Not only according to science, but here, in this National Review post titled, Stop Lying to Smokers about Safer Alternatives, there is no evidence that vapor products cause significant harm at all, especially when taking into account that they almost always substitute for traditional smoking.
Also mentioned in the National Review post was a recent publication in Harm Reduction Journal, which eluded to the explosion of youth becoming hooked on e-cigarettes. In short, it was a ruse. The publication’s new authors, Riccardo Polosa, Christopher Russell, Joel Nitzkin and Konstantinos Farsalinos, cited that the publication’s previous author failed to acknowledge that most teens who have experimented with vaping, and the tiny minority who use them regularly, were already smokers, and that as the popularity of e-cigarettes rose, teen-smoking rates declined more sharply than they had been falling previously. Just so you know, the aforementioned individuals are some of the most respected researches and public-health advocates on the planet.
Ignorance is one thing, but the maintaining of ignorance in light of credible information readily available is wrong. When this maintenance of ignorance allows preventable deaths to continue unabated is when we have to call it what it is… evil.
What are your thoughts?
The title of this blog post is a quote by Fortesa Latifi
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