The offices at Chicken-Fried News are constantly inundated with many of those lists that rank the 50 states, and Oklahoma’s position is usually the same: near the bottom of the good ones and at the top of the bad ones.
According to two different studies released this year, Oklahoma ranks as the country’s top consumer of e-cigarettes. We’re No. 1! Break out your Juul and start sucking to celebrate; maybe get creative with your smoke like that scene in The Lord of the Rings. We all know that there is nothing cooler than blowing a thick smoke ring, bruh.
Excuse me while we clean up the mess from the sarcasm meter that just exploded all over the office, much like those battery-powered vaping tanks are wont to do.
The study from New York University School of Medicine provided the correlation between lax tobacco laws and high amounts of e-cigarette user, which shouldn’t come as a particular surprise. In the most recent Legislative session, Oklahoma made no changes to the state tobacco laws. It did, however, ban vaping at public schools, which doesn’t exactly restrict access to minors, but rather cuts down on the likelihood of becoming YouTube famous for blowing some sick rings in the principal’s face.
Lobbyists for the vaping industry will argue that it is much safer than smoking, which is true in the sense that we don’t have the years of scientific research into the vaping liquid as we do for traditional tobacco smoke. It’s like replacing fried chicken thighs with fried chicken tenders in your diet.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimated that smoking costs Oklahomans $1 billion annually for health care-related bills, and we doubt that number will be reduced once the vapers come of age. At least Gov. Stitt has a good jump on his “Top 10 state” plan.