The Journal Gazette
Friday, September 20, 2019 1:00 am


Paddock deserves new term

I am voting for Councilman Geoff Paddock on Nov. 5. He has been a strong voice for neighborhoods for the past eight years. Geoff is one of the few city councilmen who meets regularly with neighborhood association leaders and walks neighborhoods. He has been responsible for seeing that many problems have been fixed over the years. He really cares about our neighborhoods. We need him on City Council.

Steve Spreng

Fort Wayne

Vape-death overreaction limits life choices

I can't ignore the hypocrisy any longer.

Seven deaths have been reported and several hundred cases of respiratory issues blamed on vaping across this nation of 300 million people.

I don't know the exact number of people vaping but I'm sure the number is significant. Being in the tobacco and vaping industry, I assure you that the number of cigarette smoking deaths in this country is significantly more than seven.

Most vapers are actually using the practice as a means to end their use of conventional cigarettes. The “teen” phenomenon can be directly blamed on the retail establishments of this country violating the law by selling these products to minors.

It is not the fault of the companies making and distributing vaping products but the blatant disregard for the laws to make a profit.

Most young adults who are of legal age and choose to use vaping devices and vaping liquids do not end up migrating to cigarettes. Most vape because it is much safer and less addictive than conventional cigarettes.

The deaths and illnesses that have been recently reported may be because of an illegal drug operation and may not have anything to do with the actual vaping industry. Until we know, let's not rush to judgment and ban an industry that is actually saving lives.

Cigarettes cause over 500,000 deaths a year and we haven't done anything to ban cigarette use. Seven unexplained deaths and we are going to destroy an industry.

Big Tobacco and government are in bed together and have been forever. This is all about lost tax revenue due to the rising interest in vaping as opposed to smoking.

I want Big Brother to stop attempting to decide my life choices for me concerning my personal interests and desires. We are all racing toward death. It is a personal decision as to how and at what pace to travel.

Steven Skiles


Jail suicide puts focus on treatment options

I was dismayed to read of Perry Ziko's suicide in the Allen County Jail this past Saturday.

The Journal Gazette editorial (Sept. 19) highlighted the problem of a lack of mental health facilities in Indiana and that the closing of such treatment facilities forces the incarceration of inmates with mental health problems. Inmates' histories vary, but county jails lack services to address the needs of those with mental illness.

A group known as Faith in Indiana, Allen County, has been working many months to address this concern by holding meetings with the Allen County commissioners, County Council members and sheriff's department. Sheriff David Gladieux has been reminded of the commitment he made last year to work on these concerns.

The public is invited to join concerned citizens – church members, community partners and families affected by incarceration – in a town hall at 1 p.m. Saturday at Destiny Life Center on Warsaw Street to urge Allen County representatives to move toward treatment options.

Laura Cantor

Fort Wayne

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