Don’t Just Vape, Advocate!
As the negative effects of smoking have become widely known, smokers have become more and more stigmatized and marginalized. With secondhand smoke being a real danger, smokers are forced outside or away from other people to smoke. Some non-smoking people take this a step further and seem to actively despise smokers for their habit, not even considering that for most, it is an addiction formed early in life (as teens or, for some, even younger) when they may not have had the best of judgment. Smoking is looked down upon as risky, dirty, selfish behavior, whether those labels are warranted or not.
The problem electronic cigarettes pose is that the general, uninformed public doesn’t know what to think about them. They deliver nicotine in the same way as analog cigarettes (which many people hate) and there is a puff of vapor which looks like smoke when they are used, so they get lumped into the same category as something that must be dangerous and negative. Because of this, electronic cigarettes are being banned in public places when there is really no reason for it.
One of the best things you, as a vaper, can do is to educate your friends and family about the benefits and advantages of vaping over smoking. If they watched you quit analogs and make the switch to vaping, they are probably already supportive. Some may still see it as smoking, though, and these are the people who need to be kindly informed that it is not the same. Analog cigarettes, for example, contain over 4,000 chemicals, while e-juice usually has about 5 ingredients (which are all considered low-risk). If you happen to be in a business (such as Starbuck’s) which has a policy against electronic cigarette use in place, educate them. Don’t get angry that other people aren’t aware of the truth about vaping. Over the past 30 years there have been huge campaigns to warn people about cigarettes and people have listened. We must now teach them that vaping and smoking are entirely different things and should be treated as such.