In their latest broadside, entitled State Laws Prohibiting Sales to Minors and Indoor Use of Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems, the CDC, in the guise of releasing information about the variance in states handling of e-cigarettes and vapor products (ecigs) has exploited its podium to spread more alarmism about vaping.
While accurately reporting that ten states and the District of Columbia have not yet banned the sale of ecigs to minors, the health agency manages to evade one startling fact: one of the main reasons for this irresponsible abdication of legislative and regulatory public health needs is the nationwide campaign by several big public health NGOs to lobby lawmakers to NOT ban such sales.
How could this be? The American Cancer Society's Cancer Action Network s sole job seems to be roaming around the country to wherever a bill is proposed that would ban the sale of ecigs to minors while also carving out a non-tobacco-product status for them, and testify or lobby against it. They would, in other words, prefer to allow kids to have access to ecigs rather than accept a non-tobacco product status for ecigs even though these devices have no tobacco. The ACS and other nonprofits would keep teens vaping to suit their own anti-ecig agenda.
Why? We here at ACSH cannot say for certain but the ACS, like all the other health nonprofits, receives millions of dollars in donations from Big Pharma, the makers of evidence-based, FDA-approved cessation products, which (unfortunately) rarely work.
Some other pearls of wisdom from the CDC s new report can be construed as more of an op-ed than anything tethered to science in any way (ENDS is the official term for ecigs, meaning electronic nicotine delivery systems): An increasing number of states have enacted laws prohibiting ENDS sales to minors, but 11 states, including the District of Columbia, have not. Far fewer states have passed laws prohibiting ENDS use indoors, and no states have enacted such laws since 2012...
Note how the discussion switched, without warning nor explanation, from the issue ostensibly at hand getting more states to ban ecig sales to teens to how to get more states to ban ecigs indoors and otherwise restrict them. Even more ridiculous: one of the rationales for such advocacy is that ecigs can be modified to smoke marijuana. But and I recall friends of mine telling me this good old cigarettes can also be so modified, for those who cannot roll a joint.
Then there is this, the standard, phony renormalization argument:
....[B]ased on the experience that smoke-free policies result in diminished social acceptability of smoking, restrictions on ENDS use in public might help support tobacco-free norms.
And hardly anything in this remarkable publication reveals the mind-set of the CDC then this passage:
Some marketing...refers customers to advocacy groups that oppose indoor ENDS use prohibitions. These groups contend that ENDS emit fewer toxins than combustible tobacco, and that public use could encourage smokers to switch to ENDS. However, ENDS aerosol is not as safe as clean air.
Where does one begin: some ecig marketing actually refers smokers trying to quit to pro-harm-reduction advocacy groups, where unlike the CDC and the ACS, et al they might get some truthful quitting information. These groups contend that [ecigs] emit fewer toxins than [cigarette smoke]. Is that an item of contention within the halls of the CDC's Fantasyland? Apparently so, although anyone who has passed a High School science class would be able to discern the fact that ecigs contain far fewer chemicals to emit than do cigarettes. And then there s this one, a laugher if this subject weren t so deadly: [Ecig aerosol] is not as safe as clean air. Well, that sounds scary, does it not?
Of course, the mainstream media eagerly took up this news, parroting exactly what the CDC s party line emphasized, pointing out the dangers of ecigs, without mentioning that the dangers are entirely hypothetical, that it s the health groups themselves preventing more states from banning youth access, or that the 43 million addicted adult smokers do in fact need more help to quit than what they re getting from the CDC and the FDA, et al.