Vape Nation

Vaping is the so-called new alternative to smoking cigarettes. There are so many pros to vaping, like doing cool vape tricks, and the flavor, and doing cool vape tricks. However, aside from visual attributes that come along with the “vape nation,” it’s difficult to see what other benefits come along with vaping.

Vapes are electronic devices that is used to simulate smoking cigarettes. The vape heats a liquid, which then forms it into aerosol that is inhaled. The famous e-cigarette company, Juul, is the most commonly used vape. Students find Juuling appealing because its pods come in various flavors, and the vape device itself is easy to conceal.

Juuls are the most recent device driving vape rates across the country. BBC reported that the amount of teen vapers has doubled within the past year.

Students are often found skipping class just to blow fat clouds. Fortunately while roaming around Riverside, five individuals- all who refused to be named- were vaping on the stairwell outside of the A hallway. The students explained that vaping was fun and added that vaping/juuling was an excuse to skip class.

The students on the stairwell loved vaping because of the adrenaline and happiness it gave them.

When asked if they were addicted, all of them (in unison) responded, “Hell no.”
Though some students are proud of their vapes, others like to keep their usage underwraps. Two anonymous juniors said it provides them with a euphoric feeling.

“It’s a way to relieve myself from the school stress,” one said when being pulled out of their third period.

The students on the stairwell and two anonymous juniors make it seem like everyone who vapes thoroughly enjoys it, but junior Llio Moyers has a different opinion. Moyers started vaping because he thought it was cool and his friends around him began doing it. At first he believed it was fun, but now that he’s ten months into it, he’s beginning to lose interest in vaping as a whole.

“I don’t enjoy it and get nothing out of it,” said Moyers. “It’s honestly just a waste of money.”
Whether a teenage vaper thoroughly enjoys vaping or not, purchasing pods for vapes will become more difficult in 2019. Juul, has announced a flavored pod ban, in July 2017, which prohibits flavors that attract minors from being sold in tobacco and vape stores. The FDA and the Juul company have also raised the purchasing age of pods from 18 to 21.

Many thought  teens would be upset about the ban, but however that isn’t the case. Everyone that was interviewed for this article agreed that the flavored pod ban was for the best. The ban was put into place to help cut down on underage vaping in the US. All the students who were interviewed were in agreement that the ban was necessary, but local retailers had different opinions.

Many Riverside students purchase their Juul pods and vape juice from IC Tobacco Shop on Roxboro Road. While in IC Tobacco Shop, employee Moe, who refused to give his full name, said that the flavor ban was unfair. Moe was previously a smoker and said that he used to smoke a pack of cigs a day, but ever since vapes and juuls became more popular it helped him stop.

Out of all those who are interviewed, he’s the only one that disagreed with the flavored pod ban, in addition he also disagrees with the age up restriction.

“If you can go to the military at 18, then I think you should be able to smoke,” he said.

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