Social acceptance of e-cigarettes is on the rise, and that may be a problem
There’s a growing concern that smoking, and more specifically smoking e-cigarettes, is “cool” again. According to a study published online in Pediatrics, the generally “favorable social perceptions” of electronic cigarettes may “contribute to the re-normalization of tobacco products into our society. Jessica L. Barrington-Trimis, a Keck School of Medicine postdoctoral researcher, suggests that, “Adolescents who have three or four of their closest friends who used e-cigarettes were 104 times as likely than those with no friends who currently used e-cigarettes, to be a current e-cigarette user themselves.” What this boils down to is good old fashioned peer pressure.
It’s pretty clear that lawmakers and the general public have been working hard over the last several years (decades?) to make smoking uncool. Are e-cigarettes undoing all of that work? Admittedly, I don’t belong to social circles that have a lot of e-cig usage so I may be wrong but the impression that I get is that e-cigarette usage is becoming more and more mainstream and thus acceptable. The science is still out on these products. Until we get a clear cut answer as to the safety of these products, this could be a very bad thing.
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