Contributed by Ann Cross

Tobacco is preying on our children? Is that the best that Alaska Tobacco Quit Line, Breathe Free Mat-Su and Alaska Family Services can come up with to convince people that vaping is bad, by implying the flavors are for kids? Aren't there a number of alcoholic beverages that could be considered to be marketed to children too, by the same standards? Flavors like apple or orange cider, peppermint schnapps or any of the berry & fruit brandies. There are candy flavored vodkas too. Are these intended for children?

If they had their facts straight, they'd realize that the tobacco industry wants the vapor industry to go away. The vapor industry is costing the tobacco industry millions of dollars a year. The fact is they do know that, they're just not being honest with you because that loss of revenue affects them too. As more and more smokers reform through vaping and take control of their own health and well-being, the tobacco tax dollars are dropping. The tobacco industry’s market share is being reduced and by 2018, it's estimated that big tobacco will have lost 80% of its market to vaping. The pharmaceutical company’s patches, gums and pills that have only about a 3% - 5% sustained success rate, will be worth less as part of a stock portfolio and the donations from big pharma to these organizations will also be greatly reduced. Salaries will be cut, positions will be eliminated and millions of lives will be saved by getting off of tobacco. They aren't concerned with protecting our children; they're concerned with what vaping will cost them financially. 

Vaping is at least 95% safer than smoking tobacco, according to a 2016 Royal College of Physicians Report. There are no carcinogens, no danger of second hand anything and it has a massive sustained success rate for staying off of tobacco. The RCP also noted in the same report that vaping is not only a gateway off of tobacco; “Use of NRT among never-smokers is rare at all ages and despite early concerns to the contrary, there is no reported evidence that use of the inhalator or any other NRT product in young people has ever acted as a gateway to smoking”. 

In other words, if you've never smoked or haven't considered smoking, you're not likely to "graduate" to smoking because of vaping. Some physician’s opinion to the contrary, here in the U.S. is just that, an opinion and not based in science. On the other hand, the RCP has scientifically studied vaping for nearly 10 years.

I am 100% tobacco free and feeling better than I ever have, thanks to vaping. Millions of others will tell you exactly the same thing. Vaping saves lives.

If these organizations’ goal is to get people off of tobacco, they need to support vaping and the vapor industry. Instead of running inaccurate ads to scare and mislead people, they should be placing dollar off coupons for the vape shops they are trying to run out of business. The truth is; getting people off of tobacco will cost those organizations and industries billions in tax dollars, salaries, stock value and donations and that's what they are really trying to protect “their” money. 

The largest preventable tragedy in history is taking place right now. Millions of lives are at stake and all for the love of money. Think about it.