The Last Word?

Posted by Schell Hammel on 15th Aug 2015

In the world of journalism, advocates and science, when is enough enough? My response to the very unsubstantiated, factl-ess, article below. Full article HERE

The Last Word?

In The Rise of E-cigarettes

I've been working in the medical field for 15 years, my husband in pharmaceuticals and biotech, watched 100’s plus patients and loved ones die from smoking cigarettes and develop debilitating lung disease and suffer, so I rival your five years in tobacco. 

I've seen kids as young as 9 start using cigarettes, now that is scary. Neither product is for children so if you should reference them vaping, please reference the ones smoking as well. 

As a user, I never say they aren't harmful, as science is ever evolving, ever changing and one day we might find something in them that is not 100 % safe, but.... I have MRI's of my lungs prior to with smoking and after with e-cigarettes. I can assure you there is a vast difference between the two. Harm reduction? You can't argue that. Agreed, science is still forth coming. Argument, science is still assessing things such as the health of eating eggs every year. Always something new. We go on what we have. Please respect the science that is out there.

On Claims That E-cigarettes Can Help Smokers Quit.

Do you smoke? Have you ever smoked? That is a true question as I do not know, please perceive it as such. Have you ever known a hard core smoker that regardless of how bad you tell them it is for them, they will continue? You talk about psychology and social aspects, but the truth is, there are 50, 60 and 70 year olds out there using harm reduction products that you down play when they would otherwise be smoking carcinogen loaded cigarettes. They don't want to quit, like their habit and choose to keep it. They just don't want to die from it. They don't want to harm those around them or smell like it. They may have even added a year or two to their life for switching to it. Is that so bad? And for your statement they don't help you quit. Of what "research" do you base that off of? I have seven shops and at least 1000 customers who have stopped completely because of these, one of them being my father who smoked for 45 plus years and now uses nothing due to e-cigarettes. When a shop is educated on the effects of smoking psychologically and socially, they can absolutely lead a person to success and discontinuation of all products, be it tobacco or e-cigarettes. You seem to favor the words research and science so I ask you respectfully to please back this up with some.

"You're still putting harmful chemicals into your body" please be specific here. what harmful chemicals are you referencing? What cancer causing agents can you name so that I can more clearly understand, as research and science you speak of so freely, so you should be able to tell me, of that I am sure. Propylene glycol? Which is used in breathing treatments and been tested on rats to be shown safe? (see studies here The FDA wouldn't allow it to be put in medication if it weren't, true? Possibly formaldehyde which has not been proven but at at the levels tested is a misnomer... Since you possibly receive more from being inside an old building, school or your car. (even the very controversial NEJM report, that lists no testing controls is less than some levels found in our own schools by the EPA ( ) daily. 

Or are you speaking of diacetyl or acetyl propionyl? Many e-liquids manufacturers are taking great pains to make sure there is none in their e-liquids, so there are choices for those. Is there something I am missing? I would love to hear your science. Openly discussing of course.

On Being David to Big Tobacco’s Goliath

You said, and I'll quote, "What is most challenging is that we are held to these incredible standards of substantiation. We spend so much time poring over research in order to communicate the facts. Meanwhile the other side can say what they want and not have to adhere to those same standards. " I read your full article and not one chemical did I read. No science poured out or medical basis. You are stating the industry does not police, test, self examine and research to back up their claims. That is completely false and ridiculous. Please look up Dr. Michael Siegel, Dr. Ricardo Polosa, Dr. Konstantinos Farsalinos, Dr. Gene Gillman, Boston University, and many more.

Do these medical physicians, research labs and studies published not show fact vs fiction? Do they not adhere to the standards within the medical industry? I believe they do, as they have been quoted, sought out and published for their research and tireless commitment to establishing good and bad science for the industry. Please do not disrespect these individuals, some friends of mine, that have worked tirelessly to provide the very science and research you have chosen to ignore. These are respectable individuals with letters behind their names and their efforts and dedication deserve more respect and admiration than your words suggest. Don't embarrass yourself by choosing to absolve their science.

On Facing Threats From Vaping Activists

I'm sorry you felt threatened by anyone. That is unacceptable in any industry. That being said, based on this factless, science and research lacking article, it is understandable why some would feel threatened by you as well. How can you blatantly point out we lack science and research, yet say they are harmful, unsuccessful and scary when you have laid out no research yourself? No science to base your theory, just harsh hateful words? The Vaping Militia. I have no idea to what forum you are referring and so I can't and won't speak to that which I am uneducated, but, I do know these gentlemen personally and they are wonderful insightful true people who do not deserve your public hanging. I have combed through possibly everything they have posted publicly and not one have chastised you in public or verbally attacked you as you did them. Again you threw out an instance of them harassing but have no facts to support your claim.

Now, I have named chemicals, science, physicians, pointed you to where you can find it all to be true and facts to back up all I have said. So, if your last words are to say we do not back up whatever claim, I have done so for you. Yet I will point out that you made many claims you did not back up at all. So my last words will be, I truly hope these are not your last words, Julie. They do not represent an educated individual well and are empty. Your last statement that there are so many that want to get rid of these products is an uneducated, fact-less, pointless plea to urge those who do not understand a smoker to sway to your side. Why don’t you say instead, I wish all of these 1+ million people would just all go back to smoking cigarettes.. To the 4000 chemicals and 100’s of carcinogens they contain, because that is what your words really say. Your last words are truly the nail in the coffin, or the one you would like to put in ours. I wish you all the best and pray your real last words will be full of information I can walk away with and educate myself. That would be for the greater good of the population at large, don't you agree?