Here's why 16 million U.S. kids can buy and smoke cigarettes legally.

What's stopping kids from lighting up in schools? In these states, nothing.

It's no secret that the tobacco industry has been marketing to children and teens since their inception.

It's a business built on getting consumers physically and chemically addicted to the product. The earlier the customer gets hooked, the better. Back in the day, tobacco companies shamelessly enticed children to start smoking with the help of weekend cartoons, doctors, and — of course — beautiful women. Take a look at some of these vintage cigarette ads.

1961



1949

1949

But nowadays, there are tons of restrictions on how tobacco companies can advertise and lure in young and impressionable kids. So while you'd be hard-pressed to find a cigarette ad on TV, electronic cigarettes are a whole different story.

E-cigarettes are now a multibillion-dollar-a-year industry with minimal regulations. So it's no surprise that kids are inhaling these products left and right.

But can kids really buy e-cigarettes?

So not only can kids buy e-cigarettes in many states, they can legally smoke them in a bunch of public places like parks, restaurants, and even schools if they wanted to push their luck!

16 million children can legally buy e-cigarettes in the United States. Let me break that down for you.

The National Youth Tobacco Survey, also conducted by the CDC, highlights the obvious elephant in the room.

Electronic cigarettes are a clear gateway to smoking conventional cigarettes.

While the market remains virtually unregulated, tobacco companies are back to their old advertising tricks.

Take a look at some of these modern e-cigarette ads. They feature celebrities like Jenny McCarthy and Stephen Dorff, waxing poetic about how "free" e-cigarettes make them feel, coupled with shots of them looking extra cool.



This ad from Vapor Couture pushes the glamour angle by featuring "eye-catching accessories" like carrying cases and sparkling e-cigarettes in "coordinating colors straight off the runway."

And while these ads may not be overtly targeted at young people like they were in the 1950s, linking smoking with being stylish, independent, and cool tends to appeal to teenagers who are struggling to fit in and figure out their identity.

Even though some of these ads come with disclaimers about not selling to minors, there are still plenty of states where minors can legally purchase e-cigarettes.

Let's review...

Millions of teens all over the U.S. can legally buy e-cigarettes, and once again tobacco companies are making the product look like the perfect accessory that will give teens the confidence they have always longed for. Hmmm?

There is simply not enough long-term research to prove that e-cigarettes are harmless. As a result, the electronic cigarette industry must be strictly regulated.

If adults want to smoke, that's their prerogative. But kids should have to be at least 18 years old before they can start purchasing electronic cigarettes. Otherwise, another generation of kids are at risk of falling victim to the deadly diseases that come from lighting up.

If you agree that there should be stricter regulations for e-cigarette sales, especially when it comes to minors, share this post and let your voice be heard.

Family
Courtesy of Houseplant.

In America, one dumb mistake can hang over your head forever.

Nearly 30% of the American adult population — about 70 million people — have at least one criminal conviction that can prevent them from being treated equally when it comes to everything from job and housing opportunities to child custody.

Twenty million of these Americans have felony convictions that can destroy their chances of making a comfortable living and prevents them from voting out the lawmakers who imprisoned them.

Many of these convictions are drug-related and stem from the War on Drugs that began in the U.S. '80s. This war has unfairly targeted the minority community, especially African-Americans.

Keep Reading Show less
Culture

Climate change is happening because the earth is warming at an accelerated rate, a significant portion of that acceleration is due to human activity, and not taking measures to mitigate it will have disastrous consequences for life as we know it.

In other words: Earth is heating up, it's kinda our fault, and if we don't fix it, we're screwed.

This is the consensus of the vast majority of the world's scientists who study such things for a living. Case closed. End of story.

How do we know this to be true? Because pretty much every reputable scientific organization on the planet has examined and endorsed these conclusions. Thousands of climate studies have been done, and multiple peer-reviewed studies have been done on those studies, showing that somewhere between 84 and 97 percent of active climate science experts support these conclusions. In fact, the majority of those studies put the consensus well above 90%.

Keep Reading Show less
Nature
via James Anderson

Two years ago, a tweet featuring the invoice for a fixed boiler went viral because the customer, a 91-year-old woman with leukemia, received the services for free.

"No charge for this lady under any circumstances," the invoice read. "We will be available 24 hours to help her and keep her as comfortable as possible."

The repair was done by James Anderson, 52, a father-of-five from Burnley, England. "James is an absolute star, it was overwhelming to see that it cost nothing," the woman's daughter told CNN.

Keep Reading Show less
Heroes

I live in a family with various food intolerances. Thankfully, none of them are super serious, but we are familiar with the challenges of finding alternatives to certain foods, constantly checking labels, and asking restaurants about their ingredients.

In our family, if someone accidentally eats something they shouldn't, it's mainly a bit of inconvenient discomfort. For those with truly life-threatening food allergies, the stakes are much higher.

I can't imagine the ongoing stress of deadly allergy, especially for parents trying to keep their little ones safe.

Keep Reading Show less
popular