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Should Ohio ban vaping? –

They seemed innocuous at first: People trying to kick the tobacco habit started turning to vape pens a few years back as a way to wean themselves off cigarettes in what they hoped would be a healthier manner. And it worked for lots of people.

Then, teenagers latched onto the products, which are easy to conceal in school hallways and restrooms. Plus, it was an alternative way to be “cool” for a generation that has had the cigarettes-are-death-sticks message hammered home since infancy.

But it turns out that tobacco entering your lungs as a vapor may not be any better for you than smoking cigarettes laced with cancer-causing chemicals. The Ohio Department of Health has documented 49 vaping-related illnesses in recent months, many of them causing severe lung damage.

Now, communities and states are trying to keep vaping products out of the hands of those younger than 21. Locally, cities including Brook Park, South Euclid and North Olmsted have strengthened laws to prevent sales of vaping products to young people.

Just last week, the Strongsville City Schools adopted stricter punishments for students caught vaping on school grounds.

And last month, Michigan became the first state in the nation to ban flavored vape products. Should Ohio follow suit, and perhaps ban vaping altogether?

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