by
Personal choice stands tall as as a hallmark of independence in this country. Life, a celebration of liberty and a forever pursuit of happiness. The American Dream. We all know the mantra. Echoed during backyard parties, family gatherings and vape events everywhere. The fire of impassioned vapers is shouted from the rooftops.

WE WILL FIGHT!

ADVOCATE FOR YOUR VAPE!

Everyone has their swagger, a basic instinct within the masses to stand and fight oppression. For vapers, oppression need not take the form of limiting typical civil liberties. Regardless, there is a vape storm brewing, and the vape storm has a starting point. Do we as vaping consumers not see what is coming across the horizon? We say we do, but do we really? The face of vaping is being formed, the government wants us gone, and the snowball has started. We stand as consumers at an inception period of history where the decimation of personal health at the hands of combustible tobacco can be eliminated by an alternative.

WILL YOU FIGHT?

WILL YOU ADVOCATE FOR YOUR VAPE?


Everything sounds great. We pump our fists in exaltation, maybe utter a battle cry with some witty kicks at the bad guys. We feel empowered by our own words. We are ready to join the battle. "I need to do something in this fight!" we say to ourselves! Wait a minute...

How?

Where?

When?

Who?


The scene gets all excited, but then the reality sets in. We've joined in the calls to action by CASAA, we have contacted our reps and made our phone calls. We look to our left and right, only to find a quarter of the people we started this conversation with. What the....? What happened to team? Is there a team?

HOW?

WHERE?

WHEN?

WHO?

The months go by and we keep asking the same questions.

i]"What are we gonna do?"

To begin with, e-liquid testing is the right thing to do. Throw in the chants for child proof and tamper evident bottling. Sounds reasonable to me. Hey, the bad guys can't call us the devil if we are challenging ourselves to tow the line, uphold some basic standards for the market, right?

Right.

Well, maybe.

We sit and wonder a bit more as we process through all the things going through our minds. We remember the tweet, blog or podcast from the night before that resonated so much with what we think needs to be done. Personally, I like the "vote with your wallet" statement the best. At the end of the day, it is singularly the most realistic move a vaper can make to help change the face of vaping. It is that simple. It knows not the density of the developing cloud preventing vapers from joining into one united group.

Here is another one. Do we really need to keep calling this OUR industry? Our fight as vapers is for the end user. The "We're all in this together" has to be challenged. Why is it we keep talking of industry and together yet it sure seems like the predominant amount of work is being done by the consumer? Don't believe me? Fine. Go find me ANY common group of businesses that have done anything more than talk. Don't get me wrong, there are vendors out there walking the walk and putting action to the words they speak, but where is the communion of saints? Where is the organization of a common standard by industry or business? Think about that. To talk about change without any actionable effort makes you the bad guy Mr. Industry. How about that? The INDUSTRY just keeps on keepin' on. It charges their fees for juice, takes your consumer money and sits back while the good times roll.

So, are you still picturing yourself sitting there asking

HOW?

WHERE?

WHEN?

WHO?

You want to join the cause for fighting for your right to vape and fair regulation. Problem is, the industry is sitting back unwilling to join together. Their business models have become engrossed with getting as much out of the cash flow process as possible before the bad guys come in and clean house. Why test your juice when it might just test out as full of nasties? Oh no, ya can't pull the juice because that is INCOME for the company. They would be cutting off their feet if the results turned out to be on the wrong side of good and evil. Can't stop the cash stream they say.

Again, what do you do now?

Another month goes by and the same old same old continues. The INDUSTRY goes back to business as usual. They refuse to change because they fear what the results might be. An entire line of juice that tests bad might cripple a company. It would indeed if we consumers expected and demanded a standard.

After the months continue to pass, you might be losing a little excitement. "What the heck?" you think to yourself. "Why are the companies not doing anything before the bad guys come in and change it on their own?" Unable to answer your own question, you settle into complacency, not knowing what to do and start to tell yourself that maybe the industry is not going to change. "Yeah, what the heck, it's all better than smoking anyway", you might tell yourself. You might even convince yourself that you're just going to ride it out and see what happens. After all, the GOV'T is gonna do something sooner or later, right?

When the above happens, the INDUSTRY has happened to you folks.

People mistake businesses as leaders sometimes. Leaders lead, and we look to them to guide the team. There is that team word again. Is it really a team? Or, are we just jaded by the fact that the words vape, vapor, ecig or juice became the things we both talk about regularly. Wake up call folks, this does not make us a team. The fact that we as consumers WANT similar things to what many businesses say they want puts us in the same arena, but definitively not on the same team. Action becomes the divide and we all know it. Tell me what you are going to DO industry people!

Be your own team if nothing else. Vote with your wallet. Don't let industry happen to you.


Future blogs:

Low Riders, Glow Cars and Flat Brimmed Hats?