Campus e-cigarette ban unnecessary; ‘vaping’ culture ridiculous

In a not-so-shocking turn of events, UCA’s board of trustees banned electronic cigarettes, or e-cigs, from campus.

I, unlike what seems to be the majority of students and organizations on campus, do not agree with this measure.

Unless “vaping” on an e-cig is directly harmful to those around you, it makes no sense to ban that action. If the goal here is to ban things that can potentially harm the user specifically, fattening foods, untied shoelaces and butter-knives (I can speak from experience) might as well be banned along with e-cigarettes.

However, I am surprisingly not here to express my libertarian views on the ridiculousness of the policy.

I am here simply to sarcastically and abrasively comment on e-cigarettes and, more specifically, e-cigarette users themselves.

Take the word “vaping” for instance.

Hey, guys, let’s go vape. No. I will not go vape with you. I would rather smoke a legitimate cigarette with you and toe the line of lung cancer than to even use an obnoxious word like vape in casual, organic conversation. Go away.

Also, many people on campus, including faculty members who have been interviewed by the media regarding UCA’s recent ban on e-cigs, mention students who whip out their e-cigs in class and “take a puff.”

Give me a break. No, I do not believe in or support the ban.

And yes, all questions of health aside, it is well within your rights to look like an idiot. It is your right to act like a jerk. Call me naive, but I would assume most people just choose not to do those things when another option is available.

Maybe this stems from hearing nothing for the last week but people who do not use electronic cigarettes talking about electronic cigarettes. And possibly, “vape” does not sound quite so bovine when it is coming from the mouths of someone less confused and uptight.

Still, I cannot personally get behind it. I exist in some strange limbo between cringe-hating the e-cigarette culture and adamantly supporting its right to exist.

I am sure it is a great tool to quit smoking, and I know that it is one million times better for the people around than blowing carcinogens in their general direction. I heard that it was invented by a man whose father died of lung cancer. I get it, I really do.

My suggestion is that someone somewhere create a less stupid-looking device. That is really all I am asking.

When I think about e-cigarettes, this weird, murky image comes into my head that I cannot adequately describe in words. If it were a person, I would want to punch it. But I would not punch it because I avoid confrontation at all cost, so I would will it away with the powers of keen snarkiness and disinterest.

I do not want to confuse anyone; the image that conjures up in my mind is not one of pretention. That is saved for the smokers who roll their own American Spirits. E-cigarette users fall into a different category, one that has not yet been named either for lack of terminology, or for hope that they will all just stop before we have to come up with a name for them at all.

If I seem judgmental, annoying or unfair, it is because I am all of those things.

The real problem is that e-cigs were banned in the first place. Because, regardless of what I have rambled on about for hundreds of words, my disdain for the e-cigarette culture is entirely my own. And my opinion, however legitimate and fool-proof it may be, is not basis for any action whatsoever, aside from an exasperated eye-roll here and there.

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