JUULing in schuul: is it cuul, fuul or just tuu cuul for yuu?

Sammy Geraci, Editor in Chief

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The issue of vaping at Waunakee has been getting a lot of attention lately. Everyone knows that vaping is not healthy, yet many in our school do so anyways. When considering why someone in Generation Z would start to vape, one thing immediately comes to mind: how insanely cool those Juul pod kids are. Whenever two teenage boys exit the same toilet stall, everyone using the bathroom immediately understands how edgy and cool they are. 

Juuling is not just about appearances towards other teens though. It can demonstrate a student’s maturity. While Juul advertises how much smokers can save by switching to their product, it is still an expensive habit for a highschooler, especially since high schoolers cannot just buy Juuls online like adults over the age of 21 can. If a high school student is Juuling, he or she must be in a good financial situation and therefore very responsible. Even if the student was not good with money before beginning to Juul, buying Juul pods teaches him or her important personal finance skills.

Despite the clear social and educational benefits of vaping, it still has its critics. Many health experts take issue with its effects on the human lung. Additionally, educators within Waunakee High School worry that the addictive nicotine in vapes among other chemicals could result in negative health consequences for their students later down the line. 

Even Juul’s own website acknowledges that young people should not start vaping and asks visitors to click a button saying that they are 21 years old before going onto the site. If the user fails to press that button and instead presses the “I AM NOT 21+” button, they will be redirected to teen.smokefree.gov. 

While the good folks at Juul have come up with a foolproof strategy to keep teens off of their website, the administrators in the school are still looking for a good way to get those Juuls out of their “scuul.” The problem the administration faces is that it fails to see the aforementioned benefits of vaping. In order to reduce teen vaping, the school must implement a program which eliminates the health risks of Juuling without compromising on what makes it so awesome. 

One potential solution for all of this is for the school to start selling its own version of Juul pods, not containing nicotine, not containing THC, but containing lightly salinated water. Ripping a Juul will appear exactly the same on the surface, but with all the medicinal effects of a Neti Pot. Instead of relaxing with the nicotine in their vape juice, students can use their new Juul pods to experience the salty, humid ocean air and relax that way. The students can still share toilet stalls to sell each other these new Juul pods, and they can still pay an arm and a leg for them, but now the school faculty do not have to worry about students dying from pesky lung diseases.