- The Washington Times - Monday, September 16, 2019

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

Remember the push for the V chip? The TV technology that helped parents control what their children were watching on television?

Well, for young people, vaping seems to be the new crack cocaine.

Recall that Al Gore (who did not invent the internet) persuaded Bill Clinton to include Uncle Sam’s V-chip legislation in the Telecommunications Act of 1996. The measure mandated new televisions contain a V chip beginning in 2000.

While signing the Telecommunications Act into law, Mr. Clinton promised, “If every parent uses this chip wisely, it can become a powerful voice against teen violence, teen pregnancy, teen drug use, and for both learning and entertainment,”

Fast forward to the current generation of young people and look at Baltimore, Chicago, D.C. and other major cities where daily headlines and newscasts prove that violence upon and by the hands of young people has not abated.



Parenting means keeping your eyes and ears on your children, and not — I repeat not — relying on government to do your job.

The consequences should be apparent. (Get it? A-parent.)

When parents aren’t parenting, young people chug booze.

When parents aren’t parenting, young people have unprotected sex.

When parents aren’t parenting, young people skip school.

When parents aren’t parenting, young people smoke cigarettes.

When parents aren’t parenting, young people smoke crack.

When parents aren’t parenting, young people snort cocaine.

When parents aren’t parenting, young people shoot up heroin.

When parents aren’t parenting, young people use meth.

When parents aren’t parenting, young people swig cough syrup.

When parents aren’t parenting, young people smoke synthetic marijuana.

When parents aren’t parenting, young people smoke marijuana.

When parents aren’t parenting, young people vape.

And here we are.

Parents are waiting for local, state and federal governments to crack down on vaping, believing that the legislation will smoke out the problem.

Indeed, the theory is that young people would reject the vaping if only e-cigs weren’t so tasty. In other words, prohibit the sale of bubble gum- and fruit-flavored vaping chemicals and young people will be turned off.

Along similar lines, politicians are backing bans on the sale of vaping products to young people altogether. Like that’s going to make a difference.

Manufactures know when a good thing is a good thing — when their sales go up. If you think that’s a falsehood, check out the crispy snacks young people are chowing down. They’re fiery, sizzling hot, blazing hot, and left Dr. Oz wiping his teary eyes.

Dr. Oz is not the King of Taste Testing, but the sales of spicy snacks by adults for young people applies to vaping, too.

Schools should apply no smoking rules to vaping.

Here again, parents must educate themselves. For example, many parents don’t even know what e-cigarettes look like. Some look like writing instruments or a watch, but transform into a vaping device.

Smart manufacturers, smart young people, ignorant parents.

Ask yourself: Did I buy my child a new “watch?” Did she receive a “watch” as a gift?

Wise up to the fact that young people are entertaining themselves by vaping.

So, be wiser. A parent’s No. 1 job is to, well, parent.

⦁ Deborah Simmons can be contacted at [email protected]

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