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Challenging the NO VAPES on Planes Ruling

March 2016, the Department of Transportation passed a ban on vaping in airplanes. The department categorized e-cigarettes as smoking, therefore, placing a ban on vaping. Without any authority, the department took it upon itself to ban e-cigarettes, and the use of vape liquid, quoting that it would cause discomfort to travelers. This is an illegal step because the body is only authorized to ban anything that jeopardizes the safety of travelers. And, to date, no research has adequately proven that vaping in airplanes and airlines is a safety risk.

To this effect, Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI) and Consumer Advocates for Smoke-free Alternatives Association (CASAA) have gone to court to challenge this ban. The two bodies collaborated to file a lawsuit against DOT ban. The two bodies argue that in banning vaping in airlines, vaping was overstepping its authority.

CEI is a libertarian think tank that is based in Washington DC. On the other hand, CASAA is a non-profit organization with members from all walks of life. The organization advocates for access to low-nicotine products as an alternative to traditional tobacco smoking, striving to offer honest information to their over 140,000 members.

CEI and CASAA Argument

The two bodies argue that the ban was a malicious act. This is because DOT went ahead to implement the ban even when most airlines had already prohibited that. In so doing, they take away the right of airplane owners to decide whether people can vape in the airplanes or not.

A blogger at CEI, Michelle Minton argued that the ban was more of an act to frighten people away from vaping. Besides, DOT itself had earlier agreed that vaping does not produce smoke. Also, they agreed that there was no evidence indicating that vaping could harm passengers in any way.

Marc Scribner, from CEI, also agreed that DOT had not been given the power, by congress, to prohibit vaping. To this end, DOT seems to be abusing power and, therefore, the government needs to act. Julie Woessner, the Director of CASAA also agreed that the ban was an illegal move by DOT.

Other than being illegal, the DOT ban is purely unnecessary. They seem to have a hidden motive to make vaping an unpopular behavior. But, if research is to be reasoned with, the ruling will go in favor of CEI and CASAA.

With this argument, we vaping enthusiasts hope that CEI and CASAA will win in court. Winning means that people will not be misguided that vaping is harmful like smoking. People will learn to differentiate the two and even appreciate the benefits that vaping can offer. Therefore, an increase in smoking cessation and transitioning to vaping will be noted. And, this is the kind of change that should be impacted by every organization that is concerned with the safety and health of the people. However, should CEI and CASAA lose, more people will lose confidence in vaping. They will consider vaping as a dangerous habit that could jeopardize their safety, which is quite untrue because vaping does not involve combustion or smoking of carcinogens. This means that vaping will be a less effective tobacco smoking cessation alternative. Additionally, losing will mean that power is taken away from individual airlines have in allowing or restricting vaping in their airplanes.

Simply put, this is a case that the vaping community needs to win. To learn more about the CASAA and other vaping advocacy organizations check out this infographic here.

About RJ Frometa

Head Honcho, Editor in Chief and writer here on VENTS. I don't like walking on the beach, but I love playing the guitar and geeking out about music. I am also a movie maniac and 6 hours sleeper.

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