Saturday, March 17, 2018

 

Twenty One - What if we limit adulting to just one age?

 
Is anyone in this country getting confused about who can do what at what age? When you are an adult depends on where you live in the United States and what you can do is often limited by what state, county, and city you live in. You're a kid in one location and an adult in another. What a confusing message we are sending to the younger generation!

I have a solution to this problem. Let's just make the legal adult age 21. Let's ban young people from all things that can damage their health or well-being until they are 21. Let's remove all things from their lives that might teach them unacceptable values until they are 21. Let's wrap our young in an innocent cocoon of bliss and shield them from everything until they are 21.

We have lots of do-gooder busy bodies out there lobbying for our health and to save the children / young adults from so many things. Let's make their lives easier and just change the whole kittenkabboodle to 21. Let's address a few of the many things that cause harm in one form or another to young people. This will begin our list of what to ban anyone under 21 from having access to...

No cell phones until 21. Too many young people use electronics to cyber bully others. They do things like share naked pictures of each other (sexting), they use it as a way to find out where parties are and go out drinking. Kids make drug deals with cell phones.

How about no TV, computers or tablets until 21? There is too much violence and sex on the TV. Kids are sitting around, filling their minds full of garbage and getting fat. They are getting lazy. Send them out into the fresh air and have them get some exercise. We'll have less behavior problems in our schools when kids have burnt off some of that energy while protecting their minds from the junk on TV. Computers and tablets would ONLY be used for educational activities before the age of 21. The internet is a land mine of filth and ugly things that children should not be exposed to.

We also should ban video games until our young people are 21. Well, maybe we could allow some educational ones for when the weather is too bad to go outside. Video games are violent, sexualized, full of stereo types, have drinking and smoking in them, and don't teach our young people about life.  Is your under 21 going to whine about being bored? Hand them a good book, give them a chore list, and if they are old enough have them go get a job.

Let's ban all sugar until 21. Obesity is is a HUGE problem and a major public health concern. No pop, no cake, no cookies, and certainly not allow them to drink those chemical laden energy drinks! We should also ban white flour. We should pass laws on how many carbs and empty calories we can feed our kids. We should ban candy and ice cream being served to our children. We should just make a national menu that is healthy and everyone with kids follow it. No independent choice of what to eat or drink until you are 21.

No sex before 21. Young people shouldn't be making babies and risking getting diseases until they are an adult and understand the risks and responsibilities.

No marriage before 21. That's a huge step in life, and people should wait until their brain is more developed before making a major life decision.

Imagine no drivers license until you're 21 because too many young people get in accidents, causing property damage, injuries and death. How much money would be saved? How many lives would be spared?

You'd wait until 21 to take out a loan or get your own checking account or a credit card. Want to go to college? No problem, have Mom or Dad take out a loan, you'd be their responsibility! Better yet, let's just keep all young people in school until they are 21. Mandatory minimum first 2 years of college education.

We already restrict drinking to 21. Why not make it that way for EVERYTHING? Voting, making medical decisions, owning a gun, smoking, buying a home, signing a contract, and joining the military.

Let's "do the right" thing and treat people like they are a child until they are 21. Think of all the children we'd be protecting from the adult world! Would they be wiser, make better decisions, and have more common sense? Will the world be a better place if we make them wait until 21 when their young brains are more developed before they step out into the adult world? Would any of them be any healthier or safer?

Oh, but wait!  At one time in history, 21 was the legal age. Unfortunately, back in the good old days we still had underage drinking, smoking, sex, and gambling. We still had obese people and people polluting the air and people shooting each other. We still had addicts and thieves. We had child molesters and abusive people. 21 did not solve any of those problems.

When are you an adult? When are you mature and knowledgeable enough to understand what it means to take something away from an adult and start treating them like a child? Are you willing to ban someone from something that could save their life and make them wait until they are 21? There are always unintended consequences to prohibition. As we pass more prohibitions, crime increases as the black market grows. Are you ready to accept the responsibility of being a party to the cause of illegal activities?

To all the young people out there, lobbying and protesting and fighting for things to be changed to age 21, are you willing for all young people to loose all rights, choices, and privileges they may want  until they are 21? Or are you only willing to see the age changed for things YOU'RE against? If you want to take away something that is legal from someone, then you should be willing to give up something that is important to you. If you're not willing to do that, why do you think you're entitled to tell others how they should live their life? 

Is freedom important to you?





 

 

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

A Long Letter to Ms. Kimmel for MN House

Dear Ms. Kimmel,

What does a woman in New Ulm, MN have in common with a woman in Brainerd, MN? We are both seekers of common ground. We encourage others to focus on what we agree on instead of focusing on differences. I agree with you that we need more seeking of common ground in this country. We have become too divided, instead of remaining united.

Like you, I also live by the life lessons my family taught me. The biggest lessons they taught me was to "do the right thing" - even if it's not popular with others. They taught me to speak up for those who need a voice.

Like you, I often feel that our political system does not represent us and that our system has become toxic.

Like you, I am deeply concerned with modern politics where those who represent us toe the party line and choose to represent the party instead of us, the citizens of our communities, state, and country.

I love your efforts to hold Common Ground meetings in the communities in your district and I applaud your desire to be a leader and to march for a positive change.

In a short period of time, I was able to learn these things about you from your video on your campaign page, and from reading posts on your facebook page, and from your tweets. I saw many things that I liked about you and your campaign.

So what led my path to cross your path and brought me to the point of writing to you? Before I answer that question, I'd like to share with you my story. It will help you understand why I am the voice for the things I advocate for.

I am 59 years old. In my direct maternal line, I am the oldest one left. Smoking has contributed to the death of most of my elders. I sat with my Mom when she took her very last breath and left us. Heart disease and cancer robbed her of any type of quality of life for a long time, before those smoking related diseases took her from us.

I am a great-grandma and my family means the world to me. At 29 years old, my son almost died when he had a heart attack. He had to be airlifted to another hospital where an amazing medical team saved his life. The 1 hour drive to the hospital seemed like an eternity to me, as I had no way of knowing if my son would still be alive by the time I got there.  He was too young for a heart attack, he had no health issues that would contribute to a heart attack, except for 1 thing... He was a smoker and he had been smoking 2 packs a day for a few years. He started smoking when he was 18. I smoked, his dad smoked, just about all the important adults in his life smoked. 

He also had a lot of stress in his life. My son has a couple of non-visible disabilities that make working for others a challenge due to issues with social skills, ability to focus and manage time and prioritize what needs to be done. He struggles with getting "lost" as his whole life can rotate around anything he is obsessing about at the time.  Another disability makes it a struggle for him to handle any type of written communication. 

He is a Dad and his daughter lives with him during the week and with her Mom on weekends. At the time of his heart attack, he was unemployed. The doctor told him to quit smoking or he'd never see his little girl grow up. He had watched his Dad and I try to quit smoking many times over the years, we tried every method known to man! He watched us fail to quit over and over and over again. He has helped me rush his Dad to the emergency room when his Dad's COPD became so bad he was having trouble breathing.

My son had also tried quitting and that apple doesn't fall far from the tree as he also failed to quit. Then a miracle happened! He discovered vapor technology and he quit smoking! Between the stents in his heart and becoming smoke free, he felt better than he had felt in years.  

He then knew what he was supposed to do with his life, he was supposed to make sure other kids kept their parents and grandparents around as long as possible by helping others quit smoking. He decided to open a vape shop. He sold his truck, tools, electronics and anything else he could part with and with $5,000 he started a business. He opened his shop in the low income part of town, because people with lower incomes have a higher rate of smoking and he felt he could help the most people in that location. His prices are super low, as people in the area of his shop don't have much extra income. He struggles to stay in business because of how low his prices are, but he said he'd rather be a poor man with the right priorities, than be a rich man getting rich for no good reason. Yes, that was a proud parent moment!!!!

Because of his disabilities, my son needs some assistance. I post on his business facebook page for him. I often respond to emails for him. On Mondays and Thursdays I help type up orders to send to his vendors for him. I have never earned a dime from his business or any other vape business and I don't want to. 

I have my dream job working 3 a.m. - 9 a.m. at a group home, providing services to adult women with disabilities. I love my job and the contributions I make to the lives of these ladies, assisting them to live as independently as they can. I have every intention of working at the group home until I am too old to do so. I usually go to my son's vape shop when I get done with my job at the group home. A funny thing happened to this momma as I was helping my son, I became an ex-smoker, too. After smoking for over 40 years, my son begged me to try vaping and sure enough, I finally kicked the smoking habit!

My son started a second business, manufacturing e-liquid for his vape shop. He also sells it to a couple of other shops. The development of quality products that appealed to his customers was very important to him. I helped him develop the flavors of his liquids. There are those out there who claim that all these small businesses who developed flavored liquids are all big tobacco and they are trying to hook kids so they become smokers. That is so far from the truth, that I struggle to wrap my head around anyone saying this. 

There are some tobacco companies who make those fake cigarette looking things as part of the e-cigarette market, but most vape shops don't sell those. They sell open systems that customers fill with liquids and the majority of those liquids are made by small businesses. It is illegal to sell these products to children and it should be. Vapor Technology is to help adults quit smoking, to help them make the switch to something less harmful. 

I wrote about developing the flavors for my son: Confessions of an e-liquid mixologist and I hope you find the time to read it. Sometimes my son needs to leave his shop because of something his daughter has going on at school or he has an appointment. He has no employees at his shop in Brainerd, so I'll watch it for him while he is gone. I really enjoy these times and I especially enjoy his older customers. This leads me to a couple of more stories to share with you. One is here in my blog: Cotton Candy is not marketing to kids. The other one is a video and it's about a lady who quit smoking thanks to finding vaping: "I think you saved my life"

I was already busy in life volunteering for many things in my community and around the country. Advocacy was already an important part of my life. After my son's heart attack and seeing most of my family quit smoking thanks to vaping, one more thing just had to be added to my plate! I needed to become a champion of helping people quit smoking! I needed to help more families break free from the heart break my family has suffered. I needed to spare daughters of watching their Moms in pain, struggling to breath, too weak to go to the bathroom, sitting alone in the dark listening to their Mom's breath fade away. I needed to spare Mothers from having to make emergency trips to a distant hospital wondering if their child would be alive when they got there. I needed to spare little girls from crying as a helicopter lifts their Daddy into the sky, not knowing if they will ever see Daddy again.

These life events lead me to where I am now, an advocate for smokers. For a healthier life. For a way out. For a technology that has helped millions of people around the world quit smoking! I give a voice to those who choose to quit smoking, who need the right tools to achieve that goal, and who need a way to remain smoke free. The World Health Organization says a billion people will die this century from smoking. It is my mission to lower that number, 1 smoker at a time. And I am very proud to say, that I and many others like me, have made amazing progress towards that goal. We're saving lives, we are keeping families in tact, we are reducing harm to others, and we are lowering the medical burden that smoking causes society.

My passion for saving lives is where our paths have crossed. Tobacco 21 is a hotly debated topic in Minnesota. Some believe it will reduce the number of kids who smoke, some believe it will cause an increase. Some believe it's OK to not treat an adult like they are an adult, some strongly oppose that. Some believe in personal rights to choose, others believe it's OK to take away freedom of choice from an adult if it will prevent someone younger from making a bad choice. Even though I believe it's an adults right to choose what they do with their own bodies I don't oppose Tobacco 21 for that reason. I oppose it because it includes vapor technology. 

I believe that a younger adult has every right to access this life saving technology as much as an older adult does. I believe my son's cardiologist who says that vaping saved my son's life, because it helped him quit smoking. I believe that all Mothers should be able to recommend something to their adult children to help their adult children kick the smoking habit. I believe that parents should quit smoking so their kids aren't exposed to second hand smoke. There are many parents out there who are 18 - 20 years old and my belief that their babies should be free of the harms of 2nd hand smoke are strong and I would do anything in my power to help those young adult parents protect their babies by helping those parents quit smoking. 

February 26, 2018 The Journal had a letter to the editor 18 states have passed T21, we should too! which contained some information that wasn't accurate - starting with the headline. Please read the article and then click comments. You will see that I left a comment. And then, some one you might know left a comment about me. Her name is Heather Bregel and it says that she is the "Co-Campaign Manager at Mindy Kimmel for MN House". Here is a screen shot of her comment:




After Ms. Bregel felt it was appropriate to troll my facebook page and then write a derogatory comment about me and make accusations that are not true, I looked at her facebook page to try to learn what she is about and what might have made her say such things. I discovered a young woman who is very active in her community and in politics. She champions for some very important causes and provides a voice for those who need standing up for. I discovered I share a lot of common ground with her, too! I can only see the posts that are "public" because we are not facebook "friends", but what I could see made me think I would enjoy knowing this person because we share the need to stand up for what we believe in. I did NOT see the person who left the nasty comment about me. 

The reason I'm reaching out to you, Ms. Kimmel, is that I'd like to encourage you to encourage those representing you to become seekers of common ground, just like you are. I found Ms. Bregel's comment hurtful and offensive. As a mother who has had to bury so many loved ones because of smoking and who almost lost her son to smoking I guarantee that the last thing on earth I would ever do is market a tobacco product to a kid!!! I also would not market or encourage a kid to use a vapor product. 

It is common practice in the tobacco control / public health community to cross a line when it comes to their passion to eliminate smoking to make false accusations and bully society into conforming to their agenda. That comment made me feel bullied. It took a lot of restraint to not comment back in a way that would not be very professional. I had to back away from the computer for a bit and go searching for some common ground. I'm asking that Ms. Bregel also seek common ground. I can tell from one of her facebook posts that she opposes bullying: 




As someone who is seeking a leadership role in Minnesota, I am encouraging you to continue your message of asking people to find common ground. To not spread hate and intolerance, to find a base that we agree on and work on solutions based on that area of agreement. I can see that Ms. Bregel also encourages love to triumph over hate. I'd like to see you encourage those running your campaign to continue being passionate about what they believe in while avoiding making false claims about others. I think we can all agree that when it comes to our leaders and the people representing them, we desire to see more truth and transparency. We don't need hate, back stabbing, and lies paving the road to St. Paul. 


Feel free to explore my facebook page.. Will you find posts about vaping? Oh Yes! Lots of them. There will be information, there will be studies, and news articles. You might even find me sharing a post about my son's business. You will find posts about being kind to others, about things happening up here in Brainerd, about people with disabilities. What you won't find is posts by me encouraging kids to use tobacco or vapor products. Both are illegal for kids. We all know the life long problems that smoking can cause those young people. Vaping is not smoking. Vaping is for adults, to help them quit smoking, it is not a product for children. I have friends on facebook from around the world. Many have seen my posts about vaping, have tried it, and are now ex-smokers. I'll proudly wear that feather in my cap, I helped people quit smoking. 

If that makes me the bad gal (or guy as Ms. Bregel thinks I am), then we will struggle to find our common ground.

Kim "Skip" Murray
Tobacco Harm Reduction Specialist - Minnesota Smoke Free 
Board of Directors - Tobacco Harm Reduction 4 Life 
Mom, Aunt, Grandma, Great-Grandma
Advocate of Kindness, Compassion, Equal Rights, Open Access to Records, and Vapor Technology
Direct Service Professional - Achieving Independence
Former Co-Director - Unclaimed Persons   



Sunday, December 10, 2017

Paint me green and hear me roar!
Confessions of an e-liquid mixologist.

Hi my name is Kim, but everyone calls me Skip. I’m an ex-smoker. I’m grateful I have lived long enough to experience the joys of not only being a Mom and Aunt, but also to be a Grandma and now a Great Grandmother. That makes me sound old!!! I’m only 59 and I’m the oldest person in my Mother’s family. Most of us have family in their 70’s, 80’s and even 90’s. At this time in my life, I’m not that lucky. Smoking has killed off all my maternal elders.

It is not only the early death of my elders that is heartbreaking, it is the fact that smoking almost killed my son when he was 29. There’s nothing more scary than the phone ringing before sunrise and a faint voice saying “Mom, I need you. I think I’m having a heart attack.” A helicopter ride, emergency surgery, and a couple of stents in his heart later, my son was lucky enough to survive. We’ve all heard that smoking is dangerous, but who would have thought that 2 packs of cigarettes a day could cause enough heart issues to almost end the life of someone who is only 29?

As an unemployed single Dad, the medical expenses brought on by that heart attack were devastating. The warning by his cardiologist to quit smoking or never see his daughter grow up was sobering. Thus began the exploration of this thing called “vaping”. My son tried it and with in a week, he had quit smoking. He soon began to feel better, sleep better, and breath better. He was so impressed by how life altering it was to start vaping and quit smoking, it became his mission to help other parents escape an early grave and live longer for their kids. He sold everything he could, his truck, tools, stereo, guns, and other possessions to raise enough money to open a vape shop. He’s been in business now for 3 years, and is so very proud of the fact that his shop has helped hundreds of people quit smoking.

A well known e-liquid manufacturer in Minnesota took my son under his wing and taught him the craft of making e-liquid. There were many conversations between them about what types of devices and flavors appeal to smokers, because the more motivated the smoker is to use the products, the more likely smokers will succeed in quitting smoking. This mentor stressed to my son that vaping helps on many levels, and it’s not just a nicotine thing. Smokers smoke for emotional and social reasons. The act of smoking at certain times of the day or in certain situations becomes part of a smokers daily routine. Even though smokers know they should quit, they get pleasure from smoking and this makes it harder to quit smoking. A good vape shop is going to make sure that the products they sell are easy and convenient for a smoker to use, fill the needs of having something go from hand to mouth, can be used at times a smoker usually smokes, and fills that need to bring pleasure to the smoker. This gave birth to my son’s second company, when he started manufacturing e-liquids.


I am known for being a good cook. I take pleasure and pride in creating new dishes that appeal to those who eat what I prepare. The thought of creating e-liquid flavors that would appeal to adult smokers intrigued me. I did the “Mom thing” and used my skills to help my son create all the flavors his e-liquid company sells. I never took a dime from his company and refused to be put on the payroll. I’m well known in my community for volunteer work and advocacy efforts for many causes. The thought of helping to develop products that would appeal to adults and help save lives was right up my alley! I put months into developing the lines my son’s company manufacturers. There were countless hours working with his customers, having them try different combinations of flavor and providing their input into what appealed to them. I find these adult smokers have a wide variety of needs. There’s one customer who needs liquid with no flavor at all, there are people who want their vape to taste like tobacco, and there are those who never want to be reminded of tobacco again. The creations my son manufactures fills all those needs. No flavor, tobacco, fruit, dessert, bakery, candy, coffee, and alcoholic beverages are all represented in his lines. We’ve learned that adults like flavor, like a large selection of choices, and those flavors motivate them to become ex-smokers. I’m so proud of the part my creations play in saving the lives of people in my community!

I smoked for over 40 years. I tried to quit for over 20. Nothing worked long term for me. To be honest, even though I knew I should quit, and I tried to quit, and I was somewhat motivated to quit, I don’t think deep down inside, I ever really WANTED to quit. Without that driving force of the want, I think I was always destined to fail at quitting. One day, my son gave me my first vaping device. I dual used for 4 months. I still didn’t “want” to quit smoking, I just knew if I was around the vape shop, I should vape instead of smoke. One day I realized I had quit smoking. I had to think back a few days to figure out when I had smoked my last cigarette. I’ve been smoke free for 2 and ½ years already! I’m no longer embarrassed to stand in line at a grocery store, because I know I don’t smell like an ashtray and offend people anymore!

Certain things really bother me. Like when anti-tobacco activists do things to destroy my pride in being an ex-smoker and helping other people quit smoking. They demonize me for vaping, something which is 95% safer than smoking. They accuse me of advocating for vaping for the money, instead of my heart felt need to help others. They accuse me of being a part of big tobacco. I’m a broke, toothless old woman - trust me, I don’t get a dime from big tobacco! The most hurtful thing of all, is to pervert the effort I put into creating flavors of e-liquids to appeal to adult smokers and accuse me of marketing to children, of trying to addict the next generation of kids on nicotine.

Not once did I create a flavor and go “hmmmm, I bet a 12 year old would like this”. Not once. I’m not a monster, I’m a mom, an aunt, a grandma, and a great grandma. All I wanted to do is help people quit smoking so they could live long enough to enjoy their extended families. I wanted to help people quit smoking so kids would no longer be exposed to 2nd hand smoke. I wanted to make the world a better place. 

If that makes me a monster....




Skip Murray ~ a.k.a. "Momma Vape"
Tobacco Harm Reduction Specialist - Minnesota Smoke-Free
Member of the Board of Directors - Tobacco Harm Reduction 4 Life
Forever a fan of the movie "A Billion Lives" - Watch it and learn! http://abillionlives.com/ 

Saturday, July 8, 2017

Do The Right Thing

RANT ALERT!!!!!!!!

Many of us are out here working hard to save our right to vape. Not only our right, but the right of all smokers who desperately need a way to quit smoking and haven't tried vaping yet. The smokers who have failed over and over to quit. The ones who feel they've been given a life sentence of shortness of breath, continuous respiratory ailments, and stinking like an old ashtray. Some are only 18 years old and some are over 80. Each and everyone should have the right to try any method they want to get them to quit smoking! We should ALL as adults be free to choose.

Now comes a lot of people trying to pass a partial prohibition, by changing the age to smoke, chew, or vape to 21. The ones who are convincing our lawmakers that young adults 18-20 aren't developed enough to make those choices and should be prevented from buying these products. PLUS, they argue by changing the age we will close the "pipeline" of "tobacco" products to those too young to smoke, chew, or vape. They claim 15 year olds don't know people over 21 who would buy these products for them.

Let's say you're fighting this tooth and nail, fighting for our freedoms, fighting to save vaping, fighting to keep it available to the 19 year old who already has a smoking problem and wants to quit. Let's say YOUR community is looking at a Tobacco 21 law. Let's say you have a member of your City Council who WAS AGAINST prohibition laws like Tobacco 21. WAS????????? Why would their mind be changed? Well, think about if you went and had a meeting with that Council person as an advocate for vaping and the council person told you they are now thinking of supporting Tobacco 21 because they caught their 15 year old vaping, and the kid admitted that somebody 18 bought the products for them!!!! What do you say to THAT???????? Battle lost, as that council member is now very motivated to join the army fighting to PASS TOBACCO 21. (Yes this really happened)


If you are one of the dumb asses buying for minors, come see me. I'll show you just how much damage a great grandma can do to stupid people. You are now my enemy. You are not an ambassador for the benefits of vaping, you are the poster child the anti-vapers are going to parade in front of the media who will plaster you all over the 6 p.m. news!!!! You are the reason that cities, counties, states, and countries will be motivated to change the minimum sale age to 21. You are a fool.

#NoEcigs4Kids
#NoSmoking4Kids
#NoChewing4Kids

If you don't understand what NO means, go back to Kindergarten and try again. Quit vaping, get the **** out of our way and stop destroying this life saving industry for the rest of us. Get your pacifier out of your mouth and think of others for a change. GROW THE **** UP and be the ADULT you are supposed to be. There's this thing between your ears called a brain, I suggest you start using it.

You are the reason people are going to DIE!







Let that sink in for a bit.

I'm grateful the MAJORITY of people obey the law and don't provide adult products to minors. I thank you for being a good person and doing the right thing. If you catch any of those who do break the law, do me a favor.... knock them up the side of the head and tell them it's a message from me.
Do the right thing, don't give ANYTHING meant for adults to kids! ~ Momma Vape

Sunday, June 4, 2017

I've Got a Question about CONtrol

I've been wondering about some things....

Wasn't the purpose of Tobacco CONtrol organizations to help reduce the number of people who smoke? Isn't their job to educate others of the dangers of smoking?  Is it just me, or is it true that the reductions in the number of people who smoke have gotten low enough that the folks over at Tobacco CONtrol are getting a little nervous about keeping their funding and their jobs? Smoking Rates Drop To Record Low (article)



How else do we explain the war on the vapor technology industry? An industry that has HELPED tobacco control show successful drops in the number of people who smoke - including the number of YOUTH who smoke? Why wage war on a product that is saving lives if the only "crime" this product has committed is to help anti-tobacco and public health organizations achieve their missions to lower the number of people who smoke? Why wage war on a product that contains NO tobacco, if your mission and funding is to reduce SMOKING and the use of TOBACCO products?  Some of Tobacco CONtrol's funding comes from the pharmaceutical industry, is that a conflict of interest? See: E-cigarette critics get research dollars from industry competitors

Why do these organizations have stockpiles of extra money that they aren't spending on their mission, and yet asking for raises in taxes to increase their funding? Is it because so many people have quit smoking there is less Tobacco Settlement Funding and they are getting nervous the money tree is going to die? Are some state governments catching on to the CON in CONtrol? Is that why North Dakota withdrew funding for BreathND? See: BreathND had a $55 million dollar surplus! (article). andAnother article about BreathND (here) 

Why do organizations like ClearWay MN (which is funded by 3% of Minnesota's Tobacco Settlement funds and profits from their investments) asking in 2017 for MN to fund their QuitLine program when ClearWay is funded for such things until 2023? (Legislative update from ClearWay MN)



Why at one time did some of these groups fight a bill to ban e-cigarette sales to minors? "The American Cancer Society; the American Lung Association; the American Heart Association; the Missouri State Medical Association; the Missouri Association of Osteopathic Physicians; the Missouri Academy of Family Physicians; the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids; and Tobacco Free Missouri have all previously called on Gov. Nixon to veto Senate Bill 841." See: Governor vetoes bill that would ban e-cigarette sales to minors (here) Why do these groups now make out vaping as an evil empire run by Big Tobacco that needs to be subjected to FDA prohibition in order to "save the children"?



Why did one of these organizations secretly negotiate the terms of the tobacco settlement AND dip their fingers into the rules that gave the FDA power over the tobacco industry (and any non-tobacco industry the FDA chooses to "deem" a tobacco product)? (Read "Untold Story" here) (More info here)

Why did this organization who lobbied for NO FLAVORS negotiate to allow Big Tobacco to KEEP menthol flavoring?  Read about MentholGate: (here) (and here) (last one here). Why do tobacco CONtrol groups now lobby for a ban on menthol tobacco products? Was that a clever ploy to guarantee future battles and job security? APA joins Tobacco Free Kids to recommend ban on menthol flavoring in tobacco products (here). Does this new push have anything to do with the rising popularity of vaping and the big push by the anti-tobacco folks to now make this life saving industry the "new" enemy of the children? Are these groups using kids and the threat of Big Tobacco antics as a scare tactic to rile up the public and the law makers to wage a new war and thus ensure future job security for these groups? Will these groups go to ANY means to further their agenda, including telling lies to the public and media? (See "Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids' Lying Has Got to Stop" here)



Why didn't these organizations fight to get RID of tobacco, instead of negotiating deals that would make sure tobacco would be legal forever and therefor making sure they'd always have a battle to fight, an endless source of funding, and good paying jobs? FDA Creates Database for Grandfathered Products (here)
Infinity = the busy work / busy body mission of tobacco CONtrol


Why does Tobacco CONtrol, who fought to make sure that all tobacco products are to be kept behind the counter, now run around and take little surveys of the POS (point of sale) areas at your local corner store and complain that it's full of tobacco products and signs showing what they cost? Is this "busy work" just a ploy to look like they are working to fight smoking, and make such a big deal out of it to make it appear they are still needed? New Rules for Tobacco Retailers (here) If we don't want YOUTH to be influenced to be aware of, around, and exposed to tobacco products why does tobacco CONtrol recruit youth to do POS surveys on tobacco products? Store Assessment Tools (here)

Why are Tobacco CONtrol people now making themselves out to be "public health" people and blasting little local stores not only for having tobacco behind the counter, but for having alcohol, sugary drinks, and pre-packaged foods in their stores? Since when did all those things become a "tobacco" product? Just how much CONtrol over our lives do these people want? Pretty soon they are going to try to tell us when we can breath or poop!  Example of Tobacco CONtrol Video.

Why do Tobacco CONtrol people use emotional ploys and claim everything is about the children, that we must save the youth, and yet do what they claim others are doing - they market to children? They use ads and videos and show kids looking at, touching, smelling, and EVEN USING tobacco and vapor technology products!!! They accuse various companies of "normalizing" these activities and yet who's ads do you see of kids doing this stuff???? THEIRS - The ads of Tobacco CONtrol!! What kind of evil being claims to be trying to save children while marketing those things to children? What gives these people the right to give children false information and then dress them up all cute and parade them in front of the media and law makers and have innocent kids spread tobacco CONtrol's lies and propaganda? What do they think they are teaching kids? Tobacco CONtrol Teaching Kids About Flavors (video here)  and Kids Smoking Crayons (video here) 

^^ Paid for with Tax Payer Dollars! ^^

The World Health Organization says a billion people will die from smoking in the next century. I think it's time Tobacco CONtrol quits playing their games, quit worrying about their funding and job security and start working towards really saving lives, not just saving a token few and pretending they are working hard to make the world a better place. Let's stop using kids as an excuse and get back on track. Let's get back to helping ALL people quit smoking. As the former Surgeon General, C. Everett Koop,  said back in 1998 Don't Forget The Smokers (article)


I found some interesting answers to some of my questions in the Yale Journal on Regulation here: Baptists, Bootleggers, & Electronic Cigarettes.  The past couple of years have turned me from a very trusting person to someone who finds themselves questioning just about everything I see and hear. I have learned that it is true.... What you see on TV or read on the internet isn't always the truth. Many people are motivated to make you believe what they want you to believe, to protect their own interests. We truly have turned into a "ME" society. I am saddened that parts of life are no longer about doing the right thing to make the world a better place for many people. I hope more and more of us get sick and tired of that and start fighting back.

When we do that, we really will be doing what's best "for the children".

~ Momma 

P.S. Don't believe me that there is this much corruption in Tobacco CONtrol and the efforts of Public Health? I recommend the movie A Billion Lives. As you watch the film, notice the movie mentions ALL the people and organizations who were asked to participate in this documentary and REFUSED......... hmmmm I wonder what they had to hide that kept them from being in a film about Tobacco CONtrol? A Billion Lives available on iTunes

Do you have a tobacco CONtrol question or pet peeve? Feel free to share it in the comments!

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Cotton Candy is NOT Marketing To Kids

True story that happened to me in 2015 while watching my son's vape shop...

An elderly lady walks in the door looking for some "juice". She's looking at the samplers of the premium lines and asks how much a bottle. I tell her $15 - $22. She raises an eyebrow and gives me "the look" and says "if you're taking any of my money, you need to do better than that". I tell her the prices of the house line and ask her what kinds of flavor she likes. She says "cotton candy, I like sweet juice". I apologize and tell her we don't have cotton candy and when she asks why, I explain the whole ANTZ (anti nicotine and tobacco zealots) thing and accusations of marketing to children. I get another "look" and she says "honey, you need to get with the program, we were too poor when I was a kid to afford cotton candy, so now I'm having it whenever I want and any way I want it. Now give me the sweetest thing you got and I want cotton candy the next time I come here." So I ring her up, and say "Ma'am, if you don't mind me asking, how old are you?". She looks at me and says "82, I quit smoking 6 months ago and now I'm going to live to be 102." and she smiles, turns around and goes out the door.

So now, I need to tell my son to get cotton candy flavored liquid and if anyone accuses him of marketing to children, I'm going to shove that CC up their..... well you know, where the sun don't shine, because anybody who quits smoking at that age, deserves to have anything they want. So he's going to be marketing to little old ladies. Feel free to share this story, it made my day. She was strong and adorable. 




Love and Hugs!
~ Momma Vape 

Thank-you Vaping In The News for the mention!

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Thursday, March 16, 2017

A Letter to Youth Fighting the Tobacco Wars

Dear Young Activists,

First, I want to congratulate you on finding a cause you believe in and standing up and fighting for what you believe is right. More people in our country need to do that! You are learning skills that will serve you well for the rest of your life, and that is always a good thing.


Yesterday was #IKickButts day. Youth from around the world spoke up to #EndIt and be the first smoke-free generation! They learned about and taught their peers about the dangers of tobacco use. They pledged to never smoke. It’s a wonderful thing to see a generation of young people push and advocate to make a healthier choice than all the generations before them. You guys rock and I hope you not only stick to your pledge to never smoke, I hope you encourage many others to never smoke or to give up smoking.

The cold hard fact is, smoking kills. It kills the smoker and it kills the people around them.

There are many things in life that are “adult”. Feeding your family, paying rent, drinking, sex, serving in the military, voting, being on a jury are all examples of “adult” things. As young people, it is very normal to want to be treated like an adult. “Adulting” sounds like such a cool thing to do. Sometimes it is cool, making our own choices, following our dreams. The heavy burden of “adulting” can suck at times, it’s more responsibility than we ever imagined.

There is a whole new technology out there that was invented to be the consumer solution to the tobacco problem. For some people, it helps them quit smoking. It was never meant to be a “cool” thing. Sometimes, it’s just human nature to make things bigger, more powerful, faster, etc. Seems like humans can turn anything into a competition. This new technology was meant for adults and millions of adults around the world have used this new technology and have succeeded at quitting smoking. This new technology is often called Vapor Technology, E-cigs, or Ends (Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems).

Vapor Technology is an adult product. It’s not meant for kids. I realize that there are always going to be kids that feel the need to break the rules and try “adult” things. I'm reaching out to the youth of the world and asking - no, I'm BEGGING - you to please NOT vape. Don’t put stuff that you don’t need into your body when your body is still growing and developing (yes, in all honesty, I’m also asking you not to smoke, do drugs, drink, etc.). I mention vape specifically because your desire to try an “adult” thing, be it curiosity, the need to experiment, the thrill of breaking the rules, or because you think you look cool is having severe unintended consequences. People who care about youth are very concerned about those of you who choose to vape, even if you vape zero nicotine liquids.

I get people getting concerned. I’m a Mom. I am blessed to a fault with what I call “Momma Bear Syndrome”. Momma bears are very protective and when I see a young person in danger or not treated right, I get angry and my Momma Bear urges go into full swing. There are men  and women all over the world who also have Momma Bear Syndrome. When they see youth doing things that youth shouldn’t do, they feel the need to protect those youth. It is the adult thing to do to protect youth.



Now we’ve come upon a problem between youth experimentation, Momma Bears, and the need to save adult lives, and the lives of anyone exposed to 2nd hand smoke. When young people choose to break the rules and vape, the Momma Bears feel the need to stop them. So Momma Bears are out trying to change the definition of this product that contains no tobacco to the classification of a tobacco product. They are trying to tax it, ban it, and over regulate it. In essence, they are trying to get rid of the entire vapor industry. Your need to experiment could cost people their lives. Many adults have failed over and over to quit smoking. Many adults are finally succeeding at quitting by using vapor technology. We all know if people don’t smoke, lives will be saved.

Do you know any smokers? Do you want to see them quit? Do you want to see them live a long, healthy life? Do you still want the rest of us to treat you like an adult and let you make your own choices? Fine, here’s your first choice to make…



You can choose to NOT vape and do the right thing for your body and have the Momma Bear’s go back to worrying about other things.

OR………

You can choose TO vape, help get it banned or taxed so high it’s cheaper to smoke. You can be part of the snowball that ends up having more people die because they didn’t quit smoking.

Doing something you perceive to be “cool” or doing something to avoid unintended consequences and having a life saving technology taken away from the people who need it.

1st rule of being a responsible adult - it’s not always about you. Sometimes, you need to make choices for the betterment of others. Your choice will prove to me just how “adult” you are capable of being. Make me proud.

~ From the Momma Bear in Minnesota