For most, vaping has been an effective way to quit smoking, and for some it has turned into a serious hobby. And it’s easy to see why. Vaping really is awesome!
Many vapers tend to care most about trying new liquids and equipment, and maybe even opening a business and helping others learn. And why not? Those things are at the heart of what makes vaping work so well for so many. It’s a community that’s been built by vapers converting smokers, one at a time.
There are lots of different kinds of vapers — from cig-a-like users to those who wrap amazing coils that look like industrial sculptures — but what we almost all have in common is the fact that this new tech has made it possible for us to leave combustible tobacco behind.
In a perfect world, that would be enough. But the world isn’t perfect. And it’s no longer enough!
Luckily, there are vapers leading the charge! Many have been involved in our legal and political struggles for years. In fact, for some, their passion in vaping IS the fight to keep it alive. These vapers have a sense of responsibility to fight for what has saved so many lives!
Call them advocates if you like, although any vaper who’s ever told their story to a smoker and helped them switch is an advocate too. We should all advocate for vaping on some level, right?
If we do not advocate for vaping, we will be at the mercy of powerful forces that are lined up to oppose this thing that we love. Politicians are already passing laws that will regulate, restrict, tax and in some cases even ban vaping and vapor products.
We can’t ignore it!
We have to stand up for ourselves and for all the smokers who haven’t even had the chance to try vaping yet.
We have a good chance to turn it around if we can get more vapers to become active in the fight and make their voices heard.
We have to all become advocates for vaping!
The first step is to learn what we’re up against, who’s on our side, and what weapons we have available.
One immediate thing you can do to aid in the fight: Take five minutes and join CASAA, the Consumer Advocates for Smokefree Alternatives Association. Yeah, I know, it’s an awful name. But it’s a great organization!
CASAA doesn’t represent vendors or manufacturers. They exist strictly for us, the vapers and users of other alternative nicotine products. Joining is free, and they’ll send you information whenever legislation pops up that threatens vaping near you. They have a great system that directs letters and comments right to your elected representatives, and turns that chore into a quick minute on your computer.
The more members CASAA has, the more weight they carry when speaking to legislators and regulators. So just joining makes a real difference for all of us. It’s a simple first step, but one we strongly urge you to make if you want to be able to continue to vape. It’s the responsible thing to do.
In future parts of this series of articles, we’ll lay out the major struggles ahead, discuss the organizations that are working for us, and offer tips for things all vapers can do, every day, to advocate for vaping.