In recent years, the sale of so-called electronic cigarettes has come under pressure and controversy from the government of the United States. Recently, there has been an initiative from the United States Department of Transportation to permanently prohibit the use, and even the mere presence, of e-cigarettes on any and all commercial air line flights that take place in the United States, whether bound for foreign countries, or for destinations within the territory of the country itself. They have issued an official ban, and this seems to be holding.
Although this ban has already been challenged, there is not much the concerned public of America can do at the moment except to remain vigilant and full of active protest when any such new legislature banning the use and possession of electronic cigarettes is introduced by any official agency of the state or federal government of the United States of America. The Department of Transportation has unilaterally enacted, and plans to enforce, this new measure against e-cigarettes and their possession and use on all airline flights within its borders.
Senator Frank Lautenberg of New Jersey has been an influential mover and shaker in all of this current legislation against electronic cigarettes and their manufacturers, distributors, selling agents, possessors, and users. This Senator is the same individual who wrote and passed the original 1987 law which forever banned the use of traditional, tobacco filled, cigarettes on all commercial airline flights within, or departing from, United States territory. As of 2012, this individual still remains in his office, with the full powers thereof. He has, so far, survived to defeat all measures directed toward the reform, or repeal, of this rather draconian anti-smoking legislation.
The Department of Transportation stated that this department of the United States federal government has been very actively engaged in informing commercial airlines, as well as the passengers who employ them for their transportation needs, that it considers that its 1987 smoking legislation also considers electronic cigarettes to be contained within its purview. There is to be no special discrimination in favor of e-cigarettes. Apparently, for the Department of Transportation and its duly appointed representatives and advisers, anything that looks like a cigarette, and is smoked like a cigarette, is automatically a cigarette, no matter what sort of material it may contain.
Even though electronic cigarettes look and feel like traditional, tobacco filled, cigarettes, they work very differently from “regular” cigarettes. E-cigarettes, in fact, contain a liquid nicotine solution (pure super heated water vapor) in a disposable, environmentally friendly, cartridge. They do not create any harmful, “second hand” smoke, nor any ash or “butts”. Nonetheless, the United States Department of Transportation considers them to be somehow just as “harmful” as traditional cigarettes, and so this ban has been met with very little vocal or active resistance.
The active user of e-cigarettes is thus encouraged to read up on all the latest attempts by state and federal United States legislators and associated branches of government to ban or impair the importation, possible domestic manufacture, and sale of electronic cigarettes. This is a constitutional issue and your voices and opinions deserve to be registered and listened to!