LETTERS: Wishing peace to all, the dangers of vaping, and a seasonal thank you

LETTERS: Wishing peace to all, the dangers of vaping, and a seasonal thank you

Wishing peace to all


I wish Divine peace, happiness, and warmth to all my neighbors this festive season.

As an Ahmadi Muslim American I strive to uphold the sanctity of all our Religions and our freedom to practice them.

Researching our Scriptures for the origins of our celebrations reminds me of how interconnected we all really are.

We have so much more to discover in the web that makes our sacred paths cross and binds us together.

Consider sharing the love and enjoying some food at our dignified dialogues every Friday evening at six o’ clock in Baitul Aman “House of Peace” Mosque, 410 Main Street, Meriden, CT. Let’s end 2019 and start 2020 plugged out of technology and into spirituality. 

Zahir Muhammad Mannan

The writer serves as Outreach Director for the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, CT, in Meriden, and as a volunteer
Police Chaplain.

Dangers of vaping


A new generation of tobacco products is addicting a new generation of users to tobacco and nicotine. More kids and young adults are using e-cigarettes, and they’re using them more often. As a mother of middle and high school students, I have serious concerns about the use of these products and want to encourage others to get involved.

Appealing flavors like mint, candy, fruit or chocolate are being marketed to young people to get them hooked. There is also a false belief that these products are less harmful than other forms of tobacco. Tobacco companies are targeting youth and addicting a new generation to tobacco and nicotine, reversing the decades-long progress that has been made in reducing youth tobacco use.

We know nearly 90% of smokers first try a tobacco product by age 18. But if people don’t start using tobacco by age 26, they are likely to never start. Our focus must be on prevention at this critical stage of life.

The use of e-cigarettes such as vapes and Juul is becoming an increasing crisis among teens. More than 1 in 5 high school students (20.8%) reported that they used an e-cigarette in the past month, a 78% increase over the previous year.

There is evidence that kids and young adults may transition from e-cigarettes to traditional cigarettes and other drugs. Many adolescents falsely believe these products are safe, and many teens don’t even realize they contain nicotine. When asked about what’s in their e-cigarette, 66% said just flavoring.

As a volunteer with the American Heart Association in Connecticut, I invite you to join me and hundreds of Connecticut residents and become a You’re the Cure advocate (www.yourethecure.org) as we tackle the insidious marketing of these products to the next generation.

Leigh Pechillo, Southington

A seasonal thank-you


Along with the usual year-end thanks to the mailman and newspaper carrier, I give a bonus to each of the five regular crew members who collect our trash and recycling. They use 2 trucks for our street, and each has an excellent record of collecting on the scheduled day, regardless of heat, rain, snow & ice, or frigid weather. Last Tuesday we put out a large stack of cardboard. Overnight it snowed and the plow completely buried the cardboard in snow & slush. When the recycling crew arrived, they dug through and got all the cardboard — cleared down to bare ground! The trash crew also pulled everything out from under the snow. Good work like that certainly deserves a thank you.

Karl Eric Tolonen, South Meriden