Following several vaping-related deaths, the Trump administration has begun to take steps to regulate e-cigarettes, preparing a ban on flavored versions. It should be noted that flavored nicotine e-cigarettes have not caused the rising number of lung disease cases that has been in the news. Even so, regulations on flavored e-cigarettes could have a major impact on the public health, especially on college campuses. According to the National Institute of Drug Abuse, e-cigarettes are the most common form of tobacco used by youth.
In light of the new restrictions, The Red & Black asked University of Georgia students whether they thought the federal government’s new policies will improve the public health.
Miles Jordan is a fifth-year computer science major.
"I think, generally, yes [they will improve the public health]. I think that e-cigarettes are probably just another way for Big Tobacco to get to the public. Stuff like vapes and e-cigarettes are commonly distributed in high schools and that sort of thing, so I think it’s good that they are putting some regulations on that."
Rhea Dhamapurkar is a junior biology and psychology double major.
“I think it is [a good idea] because there’s been a lot of research done about e-cigarettes and vaping and how detrimental it is … there was an article about … a teenager who passed away actually because it created a brain illness in him, and he passed away from that. So there’s clearly a lot of detrimental health effects to vaping, and I really feel like if the government gets involved more, then it will cause less people to get addicted and it will cause less deaths and illnesses.”
Maggie Collette is a junior sociology and women’s studies double major.
“I think it’s good … it kind of went out of control. I guess it kind of goes back into if you can choose your own health, sort of. But I kind of think that it’s good.”
Josh Yao is a senior finance major.
"I definitely think [it’s a good idea] … I do vape, but I think there definitely needs to be more boundaries and regulations towards how things are shown … Maybe a couple years ago, back at the mall that I used to work at, there was a vape kind of store right in the middle of it, and you would just actively see people smoking and it’s just like inside a public area. And they also proposed these different flavors that attract teens."
Holly Stewart is a sophomore marketing major.
“I do think it’s a good idea, although I think it is important to preserve your freedom of choice. However, I think, more importantly, the government should be focusing on the awareness of it. I think they should be doing more to make people more aware, to make it less trendy.”