E-cigarette use must be taken seriously
More than 1,100 businesses throughout the country are being warned by the Food and Drug Administration to stop selling e-cigarettes to minors.
Working with local law enforcement agencies, the FDA conducted a massive sting operation earlier this year. Juveniles, accompanied by adults, were sent to stores in attempts to buy e-cigarettes. They were successful in an alarming number of attempts.
Unfortunately, the FDA has not provided the names and locations of stores caught in the sting. Local residents should have the right know if retailers they utilize are selling tobacco products to youngsters.
The FDA’s success at this operation is both distressing and annoying. Here’s hoping local law enforcement agencies involved crack down more severely than the FDA.
It has been pointed out that e-cigarettes can be a good thing for some adults who already smoke and are trying to kick the habit.
But for juveniles who think there is no harm in e-cigarettes, a steady supply of them can lead to use of real cigarettes.
Is it a problem? Yes. As many as 2.1 million minors in the United States use e-cigarettes, according to the FDA.
Adding to the peril is the fact some e-cigarette manufacturers distribute all sorts of flavors, including cotton candy and bubble gum. That can make it easier for some youngsters to take up the tobacco habit.
Store owners and clerks should be under no illusion: Sale of any form of tobacco, including e-cigarettes, to those under 18 is illegal in Ohio.
Our state already has one of the highest percentages of tobacco users in the nation. Allowing unscrupulous retailers to risk getting a whole new generation hooked through e-cigarettes is simply unacceptable.