We are going to tell you a little fairy story today. We all love fairy stories because they have happy endings, most of the time. In this fairy story the nasty smokers of the world, who had been turned nasty by the big tobacco corporations, were finally allowed to put their tobacco sticks down and move on to something more positive.
They saw the error of their ways and they were fine with that, because they are only human and were only doing what humans do, namely trying to have fun and escape the monotony of everyday life by inhaling nicotine, and ignoring the fact that 7000 toxins went along with it.
So they were saved from sickness and certain death. Part of the measures that the kingdom put in place to prevent these people from hurting themselves and others was to designate parts of the kingdom to be smoke-free zones. Because smoking is what they did, as we all know. But things are better now, and many of these smokers are switching to electronic cigarettes. The Kingdom is becoming happier.
Then the kingdom, or rather it’s rulers, were swayed by an outside force. This outside force stated that if the Kingdom was to make the fancy new magic electronic cigarettes extinct, then gold would be given to the kingdom to be used as the kingdom saw fit. And the rulers of the kingdom thought this was a fantastic idea, and started to create special areas in the kingdom where electronic cigarettes could not be used.
These areas were the same, as it happens, as the original smoke free zones. So now people in the kingdom could not smoke cigarettes or use electronic cigarettes anywhere on the land. Anywhere that was public, that is.
No happy ending, as yet. We’re talking about Oklahoma here. And yes, we can imagine Judy Garland flying past in the house at some point in the story, but as we said, there is no happy ending and this is no fairy-tale. There is something nasty at work in Oklahoma, and it is affecting the lives of good and honest electronic cigarette users.
Grant money potentially being used to ban e-cigs
An anti-smoking group, one which lobbies regularly, is offering Oklahoma authorities grant money for banning electronic cigarettes from city-owned properties. There are many cities in Oklahoma, so not everyone has done this, but things are moving fast.
At least two cities have passed the ruling. The problem is that any city that passes the ban and allows it to be part of the legislation will receive a grant from an organisation called The Oklahoma Tobacco Settlement Endowments Trust.
The trust is offering funds in excess of $100,000 for cities in Oklahoma, if they pass the ban against electronic cigarettes. The trust received the money from a massive lawsuit against big tobacco awhile ago.
This lawsuit brought them millions of dollars. The money was to help pay for the trauma and suffering created by tobacco cigarettes. But now it is being used for cities to create what we can only call ‘smokeless free zones’. Think about that phrase for a minute, and imagine smokeless free zones in the city near you. More than three seconds thinking about the phrase shows you just how stupid it is.
It is our phrase by the way, we think it’s pretty nifty but it’s definitely not one that Oklahoma thought up. It would be nice to see the phrase on a billboard somewhere because it would be hilarious to look at. In any case, it looks like cities are picking up the offer left, right and centre. The grant received is for health projects, such as basketball courts and new walkways in parks.
The money was supposed to be for the benefit of those who suffered from tobacco cigarettes, and their families. And I suppose you could say that a basketball park will help an ex-smoker get fit. But the whole thing smacks of hypocrisy. Oklahoma, as a state, is now being forced to prevent certain parts of the communities from doing what they love. In return, an important city project will go ahead.
Adding taxes on top of the vaping issue too
It is just another way that a state will receive money from electronic cigarettes. By banning electronic cigarettes they receive in excess of $100,000. In a few months time, Oklahoma, like many other states, will probably impose a huge tax levy on electronic cigarettes. Things are being clamped down around the industry.
And right at the heart of it all is the concept that is still true when anyone looks closely at electronic cigarettes. They don’t contain toxins, they don’t have carcinogens in their thousands. They don’t create smoke, or odour. And they don’t provide secondhand smoke for babies and children around them. The simple electronic devices form part of a pastime for many. Right now, it seems that electronic cigarette users are facing a kind of victimisation.
People will not stop using e-cigs
We know there will be a middle ground in a few years time. People are not going to stop using electronic cigarettes because it is the single biggest medical breakthrough in recent years. These things are going to save millions of lives. From the 40-a-day smoker who switches, to the child who decides quickly to quit tobacco cigarettes, millions and millions of lives will be saved by the devices.
This will blow up in the face of the authorities, who will realise that they are ostracising groups that form a very healthy demographic. This very healthy demographic will live longer and pay more taxes. So it all seems rather silly.
Much better, we think, to allow certain zones in cities where people can vape. This makes much more sense and it keeps a demographic happy. E-cigarette users are intelligent, well intentioned people. That’s how we got here in the first place. They are happy to follow rules, and they wouldn’t mind having zones to vape in. Having everything taken off you at once, and taxes on top, could be the last straw.
Hopefully, the revolution will be bloodless.