By Corey Bennett
Curiosity surrounding flavors and following trends have slowly roped teens into vaping, but not ex-cigarette smokers, who have been trying to look for an alternative to smoking.
After years of students and teens being brought into this nicotine addiction, it has possibly come to a stop. On Tuesday, November 8th, California voters passed a ballot measure to uphold a law made in 2020 that banned the sale of flavored tobacco products. After years of anti-tobacco advocates fighting to stop the industry of youth vaping, they were finally victorious.
After Govenor Gavin Newsom signed the Senate Bill 793, Proposition 31 was placed onto the ballot. This was an effort to crack down on e-cigarettes that have been popular with teens. This law banned the sale of most flavored tobacco products that are sold in both stores and vending machines. Some products like hookah, premium cigars, and loose leaf tobacco are an exception to the ban.
This was highly voted on, as it was seen as a way to deter teens from being lured into smoking. Some have said that this could finally be a start, to stop nicotine use among students all over the country. A Centers for Disease Control and Prevention youth survey done in 2020, shows that over 20% of high school and almost 10% of middle school students reported current use of e-cigarettes.
California voters who are against this ban of flavored tobacco are saying that this is bad for smokers who are trying to quit the traditional cigarette. Saying that some communities are being unfairly targeted by law enforcement; “This is a disappointment to the millions of adults over the age of 21 who are now prohibited from purchasing these products as well as other FDA-authorized harm-reduction alternatives,” says the “no” campaign led on Proposition 31.