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An open letter to El Cajon City Councilmembers to consider vaping ban Nov. 12

By Amanda McGimpsey, El Cajon

November 6, 2019 (El Cajon) -- My grandmother had a beautiful singing voice.  But I never heard it.

In the 50’s, my grandmother was a social smoker. She was told that smoking was healthy. That it helped her skin. Helped her loose weight. Even that it was good for calming your nerves during pregnancy. That’s what the packaging said and the scientific research on the long-term health effects of smoking wouldn’t be completed for nearly two decades.


And during those two decades my mom developed severe childhood asthma. They didn’t know the cause then but looking back we know it was the exposure to cigarette smoke. And it wasn’t just my mom. My grandmother began to have trouble breathing as well.


After my mom went to college, my grandmother’s breathing got so bad that she needed to have a tracheostomy to create a permanent opening in her neck for a breathing tube. She got it right before Christmas break but she waited to tell my mom until she got back from college because she wanted my mom to focus on studying for finals. She was so proud of my mom for being the first one to go to college.


My grandmother had a beautiful singing voice – but I never heard it.


Because from that day forward, she could only say two or three words at a time and then she would have to take a raspy gulp of air.


Don’t let the vaping industry do the same thing to El Cajon that the tobacco industry did to my family. Don’t let them convince El Cajon citizens that vaping is healthy when they do not have the long-term scientific research to back that up. Right now, all they have is billions of dollars in marketing and lobbying fees.


This is a question of putting business profit over community health. I am writing you today to plead with you -- protect our citizens health not the corporation’s profit. Please consider a temporary ban on vaping until more scientific research can be completed. At the very least our citizens deserve to be able to make an informed choice.


That’s more than my grandmother had.

The opinions in this editorial reflect the views of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of East County Magazine. To submit an editorial for consideration, contact

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