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Op-Ed: Fossil’s vape problem

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Op-Ed: Fossil’s vape problem

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All views and opinions expressed in outside op-eds are those of the author and do not reflect the beliefs of Etched in Stone or its staff. If you would like to respond or continue the discussion, we invite you to submit your own op-ed here.

 

Over the course of their existence schools tend to accumulate file cabinets of stereotypes, some small, some wide spread, each varying on levels of truth. Fossil is no exception to this rule. For years Fossil has been dubbed “the rich” school, supposedly comprised of only wealthy students who are vastly privileged. Now anyone who has walked through the halls of Fossil for more than a few mere seconds knows that Fossil is incredibly diverse, with students flooding in from all walks at life, with various financial situations. Recently a newer stereotype has begun to be thrown in with Fossil students, that being that this is the “drug school”. Even the student body attests to this, eager to admit that they believe a majority of their peers are involved in some sort of drug or another, and a major drug that has sneaked through the cracks is Vape.

Resembling a flash drive in appearance and containing anything from flavored water vapor to nicotine, vape has swiftly embedded itself in Fossil’s culture. It’s hardly uncommon for some one to quip, “hey, since when did they install toilets in the vape room?” While humor like this certainly isn’t bad -laughter is hardly a thing to fret over- it does give insight into what has become the Fossil norm. But what often gets cast aside are the dire effects that come with vaping.

Being a newer product, those getting into vape are disadvantage because unlike cigarettes, which have time and time again been scientifically proven to be extraordinarily hazardous, the research on Vape is still rather vague. But that doesn’t mean that experts are entirely in the dark. According to Yale Medicine, Vape, which often contains nicotine or, in the case of mod pods, certain strains of tobacco, is highly addictive and highly dangerous (https://www.yalemedicine.org/stories/teen-vaping/).Doctors have discovered that nicotine has massive negative effects on the undeveloped brain, interfering with memory and attention processing. Physically, vaping can harm blood vessels and lead to what is commonly referred to “popcorn lung”. This is excessive scarring and obstruction of the lungs smallest airway, something that could cause the lung to collapse. Despite these risks in 2017 the CDC reported that about 50% more high schoolers vape than smoke, while surveys have found that 24% of seniors admit to vaping daily. (https://www.newportacademy.com/resources/substance-abuse/teen-vaping-health-risks/) Given the health consequences, not to mention the fact that vape is illicit for those under 18, these are alarming statistics.

Naturally, students are easily drawn in by the plentiful vape flavor selections and the mythical “cool” factor. Many begin vape, using cartridges void of nicotine, for the social aspect, but this often progresses into using nicotine later on. Peer pressure can play a major role and it can be hard for students, even those who would never think to vape, to turn down the opportunity when they’re presented with it. At a time like this when vape is the craze and fellow students report seeing vape deals occurring in the bathrooms from time to time, it is almost harder to avoid vape than it is to access it.

Given the current role of vape in the school, it only makes sense that the student body should at least try to minimize it, after all the responsibility cannot be expected to fall on the teachers alone. As individuals, we should take steps to better the school’s culture in regards to vape, as well as take responsibility for our own interactions for vape. Instead of turning a blind eye when friends or, even strangers, participate in using vape one can try to discuss their concerns with these individuals and dissuade them from using. Reaching out to those who are struggling with vaping can also be beneficial, giving them not only a friend to count on, but guidance and ways to open doors to other help such as teachers, parents, or counsellors. Together we, the Fossil family, can strive to make Fossil a positive, vape free environment and become the school we know we could be.

3 Comments

3 Responses to “Op-Ed: Fossil’s vape problem”

  1. The FDA banned Fruit Vapes on December 19th, 2018 12:08 pm

    The FDA banned fruit vapes

  2. Payton Lee on December 20th, 2018 10:14 am

    Vaping is so pathetic

  3. Adamas on March 15th, 2019 9:36 am

    Though I agree with Payton, this isn’t entirely our fault. The Colorado government legalized (or at least decriminalized) Marijuana back in 2017, and we can’t control the stereotypes of others. All we can do is hold our heads up, dispute them and be better than them by not lashing back.

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Op-Ed: Fossil’s vape problem