The Lemon Grove, California City Council has expanded an existing ban on tobacco use in private businesses and public parks to include e-cigarettes.
Beginning October 1, using e-cigarettes in privately owned businesses, such as bars and restaurants, or public areas, such as the city’s dog park, carries up to $500 in fines and penalties.
Dr. Gilbert Ross, senior director of medicine and public health at the American Council on Science and Health, says e-cigarette bans aren’t based on scientific facts.
“Given the complete lack of evidence that e-cigs, their vapor, or anything about them poses a health risk, this measure is merely an attempt by big government to suppress an adult activity for no valid reason whatsoever,” Ross said.
“We can safely say that millions of smokers have quit thanks to e-cigs,” Ross said. “There is zero evidence to support that seeing someone smoking or vaping in a park is going to encourage a youngster to start smoking.”
Just Blowing Smoke
Aeon Skoble, a professor of philosophy at Bridgewater State University, says the council members in Lemon Grove should concern themselves with more important public health matters.
“The exhaust from passing trucks and buses is probably worse than the cigarette smoke, which dissipates pretty quickly outdoors,” Skoble said. “But even granting the legitimacy of banning smoking in the park, it wouldn’t follow from that that a ban on vaping would make sense.”
Instead of improving public health and the environment, Skoble says e-cigarette bans are just a lot of hot air.
“The off-product of e-cigarettes is water vapor,” Skoble said. “Banning water vapor merely because vaping cosmetically resembles smoking can’t be justified on health grounds, so it amounts to lifestyle bullying.”
Gabrielle Cintorino ([email protected]) writes from Nashville, Tennessee.
Lynne Dawkins, et al. “Nicotine Derived From the Electronic Cigarette Improves Time-Based Prospective Memory In Abstinent Smokers,” Psychopharmacology: https://www.heartland.org/policy-documents/nicotine-derived-electronic-cigarette-improves-time-based-prospective-memory-abstin/