This was written a few months ago not long after my home was raided. I delayed posting it for my own security because my country is pretty much a security state.
As many of the veteran vapers may know, vaping is illegal in Singapore. I've been a vaper for just over 3 years and I've been totally off cigarettes for 2 years.
It was illegal to import and sell any vaping related products in Singapore until the government decided to change the law back in December 2015 when it became illegal to possess any form of vaping products.
I obviously didn't stop vaping for health reasons and it had already became a huge hobby of mine. I have always been a low profile vaper. I only vaped at home and in my office. Never in public. I've never sold a single mod or a bottle of juice.
So sometime this year, a package of mine containing juices got seized at the customs. I didn't think much of it until I got a knock on my door a few months later. They flipped my home. They went through my phone. Checked every messages looking for other vapers. They took every mod, juice, tank and even my wires. They took photos of my home. Every cupboard, every shelf. I couldn't make sense of everything.
After they were satisfied, I sat down with them and was made to go through every single item. They flash every item in front of me, wanting to know when I bought it, how I bought it, what mode of payment did I use, where it originated from and how much did they cost. If I bought it online, they wanna know the website, if I bought it as a guest or I have an account. If I do they wanted to know the account name.
As stated earlier, I've been vaping for 3 years and this is a huge hobby of mine, so you can imagine the number of items I have. It numbered in the hundreds because every single part is something to them. Even some old lock rings from mech mods. Now think about how long it took for me to complete my statement. It was hell.
I was made to sign a statement acknowledging that I understood that I have broken the law. Here is the clause if anyone is interested.
I have absolutely no idea what is going to happen next. When I asked if I'm going to be charged, I was told to wait. So for the past few months I've lived in fear. The fear of facing this.
Any person who contravenes the ban shall be liable to a fine not exceeding $10,000 or imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6 months, or both, and in the case of a second or subsequent conviction, a fine not exceeding $20,000 or imprisonment for a term not exceeding 12 months or both.
Yes, I can possibly go to jail because I vape. Alone. At home.
So what have I been up to these few months without vaping?
I was determined to stay of cigarettes. The first day was hell, so I tried nicotine patches. It didn't work. I moved on to nicotine gum. Nope. I tried cold turkey and for the life of me, I couldn't take the withdrawal. 3 weeks later, I smoked my first cigarette in 3 years.
I hate myself as I smoked but at the same time it provided me with the relief. I still smoke now but the hatred for both the government and myself brews everytime I light one up.
Most importantly, I'm not alone. Hundreds of vapers in Singapore are getting raided. The UK health ministry tried asking the Singapore goverment to allow vaping as a smoking cessation aid but our government wasn't having any of it. They continued to justify the ban saying, "Vaporisers may contain cancer causing agents" and could possibly be a gateway for children and teenagers to start smoking.
So what's the point of writing this?
I was furious when the first part of this post. I wrote it a few days after the raid when I was going through withdrawal. I needed an outlet so I wrote it down but I didn't wanna post it so soon after the raid for fear of being tracked down.
Now that so much time has passed, I've come to known that many fellow vapers have experienced the same fate but no one dared talk about it. Well, we can't stay mute forever. Someone has to let the vaping community know what we are going through for trying to improve our health.
We've never harmed anyone. We never sold any vaping products. And yet we are being prosecuted
I'm posting this on public wifi so I can only answer questions for the next hour or so. This account will never be used again. Sorry for the paranoia, but I have to be careful.
EDIT: I'm signing off now. Thanks for all the comments and questions. I'll continue to read your comments but I'll never login here again. May vaping be accepted worldwide soon. Vape well guys, I hope I'll be back with you guys soon. I miss vaping.