Singapore, Smoking (or equivalent), and you…

Malaysians know Singapore as that sterile plot of land at the Southern tip of Peninsular Malaysia, while the rest of the world (that knows of Singapore) knows Singapore as that dot that is quite close to an unknown point on the equator. If you like either chewing gum or smoking, chances are you aren’t particularly fond of Singapore… mainly because Singapore is also largely known as a buttoned all the way up, straight laced, follow the rules or burn at the stake kind of place. In their well intentioned effort to improve the health of its citizens, the Singaporean government has made it incredibly difficult for anyone to find a place where you can do anything and smoke at the same time. Very low percentage of population smoking? Check. Very few smoke friendly areas? Check. Scary stories about vapers being hunted down and subjected to medieval torture? Check.

As a vaper visiting Singapore, the government has managed to make me a smoker. I’d much rather be vaping, but given the horror stories of fines and confiscations… you can see where I’m coming from. I vape indoors and in private, almost as if the combination of vegetable glycerine and propylene glycol creates crystal meth rather than a (yet to be clinically proven over time) harmless cloud of vapor. I puff on a cigarette openly, because that stick of tobacco has become my vape replacement device, instead of the other way around. My top rated vape pen is of no use here, this is likely going to be a short visit.

To be clear, I’m not saying the Singapore government (they aren’t even my government so why should they listen to me) should say you can vape anywhere and everywhere. I do, however, think that vaping should be at the very least as tolerated as tobacco smoking is. Anywhere you can smoke, you should be able to vape. Say what you may about the (unproven) long term safety of vaping, but vaping is proven to be a very effective smoking cessation device. Would you rather your friend be smoking crack cocaine or tobacco? Would you rather your friend be smoking tobacco or vaping? That’s the train of though I’m following, C is less harmful than B is less harmful than A… and while I have mentioned the long term effects of vaping are as yet unproven, I’m going to just throw it out there that it is probably a lot healthier than tobacco even with the limited information available now. I am of course ignoring the extremely biased research that has shown up in either direction, both for and against vaping.

I’m not entirely sure how chewing gum fits into this discussion, but you could probably shoot an email to the relevant government department and find out.

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