Most mainstream media outlets are towing the line when it comes to reporting on vaping. Generally they report negative speculation complete with scary headlines. The New York Times looks like it may be bucking the trend and coming to the defense of vaping. The New York Times vaping story actually expressed concern that the attack on electronic cigarettes is dangerous.
Sabrina Tavernise of the times points out that retail sales of e-cigs have slowed and one of the original e-cigarette brands, Njoy, has filed for bankruptcy. She identifies a large part of the reason as the negative reaction to electronic cigarettes. That negative reaction from officials has led to a constant messaging to the American public and that message is that vaping is dangerous.
The Times also suggested that another reason for slowed e-cig sales is that e-cigarettes do not deliver a nicotine hit as effectively as a cigarette. If you are talking about the types of e-cigs that are sold in box stores and convenience stores, that is certainly true. The nicotine in cigarettes is not the cause of health concerns rather it is the byproducts of combustion and tobacco additives. The better quality electronic cigarettes are much more effective at delivering nicotine than the ones sold in C-stores.
New York Times Cautions Against Vaping Alarmism
The New York Times warned against vaping alarmism and spoke of the profound disservice to 40 million Americans that might benefit from electronic cigarettes. Senior scientist at the Truth Initiative was quoted in the article saying “We may well have missed, or are missing, the greatest opportunity in a century. The unintended consequence is more lives are going to be lost.”
This is what the vaping community has been warning of for years. The question of vaping is not a game or a contest of wills. There are real lives at stake and limiting options does not make sense.
As the evidence that vaping is less dangerous than smoking has mounted, the New York Times has noticed. Hopefully the New York Times pivot will cause other mainstream media outlets to truly evaluate the negative campaign against vaping and compare it to what the facts and science are really telling us. And perhaps the media will begin to listen to a variety of health experts as opposed to always going back to Stanton Glantz for a predictable, scary anti-vaping quote.
Dr. Thomas Glynn
The Times quoted several health experts who shed light on some of the vaping fallacies that have taken root in the public conscious. One of the experts that the Times reached out to was Dr. Thomas Glynn.
Dr. Glynn is a consulting professor at Stanford and a former director of cancer science and trends for the American Cancer Society. If you have been following vaping news for a while now you know that all of the anti-vaping special interest experts all say the same thing. They say that there is not enough research to support vapor as a viable, safer alternative to smoking. Dr. Glynn says that argument no longer holds water. As a vaping community we also collectively real every time some special interest group compares us to Big Tobacco. Dr. Glynn calls out that nonsense, too.
“We know there’s a big, bad tobacco industry, and that’s the enemy,” Dr. Glynn said. “But e-cigarettes do not fit that narrative. We are fighting a 2016 insurgency with nuclear weapons from the 1980s. Advocacy is leading the charge, as opposed to science and public health is suffering as a result.”
Anytime we can talk about additional voices and media that are doing the honest work of measuring vaping vs the costs of tobacco harm is a winning day for public health and the millions struggling with smoking.