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The Post and Courier provides a forum for our readers to share their opinions, and to hold up a mirror to our community. Publication does not imply endorsement by the newspaper; the editorial staff attempts to select a representative sample of letters because we believe it’s important to let our readers see the range of opinions their neighbors submit for publication.

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Letters to the Editor: Statehouse bill protects tobacco industry, not state's youth

Vaping Boom (copy)

A high school student uses a vaping device near a school campus in Cambridge, Mass. A South Carolina House bill would prohibit communities from passing laws that could help curb youth tobacco use. 

We are writing to express our concern about H.3681 in the S.C. House.

This bill would stop local action by prohibiting communities from passing laws that could help curb youth tobacco use and increase retailer enforcement of sales to minors.

H.3681 would protect the tobacco industry’s bottom line by perpetuating practices that disproportionately target low-income communities and at-risk youth, further aggravating health disparities.

We should protect our children and communities from a lifetime of nicotine addiction.

Tobacco use is a major preventable risk factor in the development of heart disease.

Unfortunately, youth tobacco use continues to be a major problem in our state. According to the 2019 S.C. Youth Tobacco Survey, 30% of high school students reported use of any tobacco product.

E-cigarettes or vaping use among youth and young adults can harm the developing brain because of exposure to harmful chemicals in nicotine.

And flavors such as menthol and fruit continue to entice children to try these products.

Together, we need to protect our youth from tobacco companies. Ask your House member today to take action and vote no to H.3681.

KATIE SCHUMACHER

Executive Director

American Heart Association

GAYENELL MAGWOOD

MUSC Health

Board president

American Heart Association

Johnnie Dodds Boulevard

Mount Pleasant

Do a bit of good

Exactly one year from the day that the pandemic struck in South Carolina, when many were worn down and feeling lost, an angel from the Heart of Hospice renewed my belief that benevolence is alive and each of us has the ability to be a channel of God’s peace.

I am humbled and awe-struck by the kindness shown to me as I stepped up to the register with a cart full of groceries, only to realize that I’d left my wallet at home.

Little did I know, as I stood there perplexed, that I would be the recipient of a kind deed.

My conversation with the checkout attendant had been overheard by a stranger who insisted on paying for my items.

As I walked away with my usual sense of guilt when a kind gesture is offered to me, I reflected on how I could pay it forward and encourage random acts of kindness, like I had just experienced.

I am grateful for this monetary gift. However, the real gift was the encouragement that I received to follow this example with a similar act that would be meaningful.

Every day we each have an opportunity to practice empathy.

As South African Archbishop Desmond Tutu said, “Do your little bit of good where you are; it is those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world.”

ROSALYN MORRISON

Lockwood Drive

Charleston

‘Turtle Man’ missed

On Jan. 1, we lost a true friend and patriot to COVID-19. Retired Lt. Col. James David Poindexter was an honorable and unassuming man.

He graduated from Virginia Military Institute in 1963 and served his country with distinction for 30 years as an officer and as a Naval Criminal Investigative Service special agent.

He had assignments abroad and in Washington, D.C., and Charleston, where he retired and made his home with his lovely wife, Joann Brown Poindexter.

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Jim was involved in designing an armored vehicle for the Navy and U.S. Secret Service.

He also represented the Navy and Marine Corps in technical and surveillance countermeasure issues.

In retired life, Jim became involved with the Kiawah Island Turtle Patrol, leading and sharing his love for nature and animals.

Jim has fulfilled his duty and mission on this Earth. He can now rest in peace.

We will never forget this special man and dear friend.

LORENZO (L.D.) SUGGS

Marshwood Drive

Hollywood

Don’t trash planet

I have an issue with people throwing trash on the ground.

I would ask them to stop littering along Dorchester Road in North Charleston.

I live in North Charleston and go to Zucker Middle School.

The Earth does not do well with trash because birds and other animals eat it and sometimes die because of it.

Hold your trash until you find a trash can.

More trash cans should be put around the Dorchester Road area since people are more likely use one if they see one.

MAGALI AVILA AVILA

Dorchester Road

North Charleston

State flag design

The flag design can the legislators were kicking down the road turned out to be a hornet’s nest.

LENNY BRANCH

Jasper Boulevard

Sullivan’s Island

Wear a helmet

In a small town in the state of Washington, very far from Charleston, 14-year-old Berrett Crossley died of a traumatic brain injury suffered while skateboarding without a helmet.

Berrett was a fun-loving kid who spent most of his free time outdoors. His personality was a gift to all those who knew and loved him.

On March 8, Berrett’s parents made the heartbreaking decision to donate their son’s organs, a gift that would save the lives of countless other children in the Pacific Northwest and beyond.

Already, the city council in Buckley, Washington, passed an ordinance making it mandatory to wear skateboard helmets at the local skate park, not only to honor Berrett but for the safety of all riders.

“Wear it for Berrett” helmets will now be provided for anyone who needs one, thanks to Berrett’s family and all those who donated to his fund.

This is a reminder to all parents to make sure their children wear helmets while biking, boarding and riding, and that organ donation is the ultimate gift of life.

SUSY RAYBON

Glen Eagles Drive

Summerville

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