Opinion

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Letter

Banning E-Cigarettes Won’t Reduce Vaping Among Youth

A ban will not stop our youth from vaping, it will make it more “cool”

Several years ago my kids were students at Foothill High School in Pleasanton, California. I remember one day I was meeting with them at one of school entrances, next to a small playground with a bench. My daughter pointed to this bench and told me: “Mom, this is smokers bench, this is a place where students buy and smoke pot.” The bench was located in about 60

yards from the entrance. Every student at school knew about this place. Everyone who wanted to smoke pot was able to get it. Marijuana was illegal. Every student of this school knew that tobacco cigarettes are dangerous and they should not smoke them. Students who wanted to smoke and to get high didn’t worry about possible health damage from weed.

The point of this story is that the belief that an e-cigarette ban would reduce vaping among Montana youth is just a wishful thinking. A ban will not stop our youth from vaping, it will make it more “cool.” What will happen is that when legal stores are completely replaced by black market, any kind of regulations would become impossible. And the same as with marijuana where years of “monopoly” of black market only increased narcotic effects of marijuana, dominance of black market in e-cigarettes sells will only make vaping products more addictive and more dangerous.

If we want to prevent our kids from damaging their health by using unhealthy products we must concentrate our efforts on education and on reducing their demand on this products. Banning them while keeping their popularity intact and will cause a lot of harm and absolutely no benefits.

Anna Shchemelinin
Bozeman