Smoking gun: Students react to potential anti-smoking and vaping city ordinance

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Students have mixed reactions to potential anti-smoking and vaping city ordinance. “I mean, I don’t know, but to me it sounds like a fine idea,” Adam Cook, junior in mass communications, said. “Not sure if there would be ramifications except for people still vaping and holding it in until the smoke is gone.” (Kellly Pham | Collegian Media Group)

While Kansas State has been a smoke free campus for a few years, public spaces in Manhattan may soon follow suit.

The Manhattan City Commission is considering implementing a no-smoking or vaping ordinance in public areas for the health of the city residents.

Elements of the proposed regulations prohibit vaping in smoke shops as well as in enclosed areas or public meetings, including within 20 feet of access points to buildings.

“I mean, I don’t know, but to me it sounds like a fine idea,” Adam Cook, junior in mass communications, said. “Not sure if there would be ramifications except for people still vaping and holding it in until the smoke is gone.”

Any person who violates the ordinance would be subject to up to $100 fine for the first violation, $200 for the second violation within one year of the first and $500 for the third violation within one year of the first.

“I think that’s dumb because how are either of these things hurting anyone?,” Laura Keener, junior in mass communications, said. “And what are people in Aggieville going to do? Not smoke and vape while they drink? How about we ban diesel trucks?”

In April 2019, an outbreak of lung illness related to vaping in Illinois and Wisconsin occurred. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 1,300 cases of vaping related illness have been reported in 49 states, the District of Columbia and one U.S. territory.

“I find it to be tragic,” said Desiree Powell, senior in fine arts and parks management and conservation. “There should have been more tests before the product was put on the market in order to ensure the safety of its users.”

Many patients reported using products containing THC, the active ingredient in cannabis. Some of these products contained vitamin E acetate — typically found in dietary supplements and topical consumer products. While the Food and Drug Administration and CDC have not concluded it is the outbreak’s cause, it is recommended that users avoid the substance.

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