With new vaping ban, Palo Alto expects smoke shops to shutter | Town Square | Palo Alto Online |

Town Square

Post a New Topic

With new vaping ban, Palo Alto expects smoke shops to shutter

Original post made on May 19, 2020

Palo Alto's elected leaders agonized on Monday night over a seemingly impossible question: How can you ban sales of vaping products without killing smoke shops?

Read the full story here Web Link posted Tuesday, May 19, 2020, 9:54 AM

Comments (55)

27 people like this
Posted by mom of former vaper
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on May 19, 2020 at 10:02 am

When my son was in high school, he had zero problem buying vape products from multiple stores in Palo Alto (of course, his parents didn't know...)


56 people like this
Posted by Nanny state
a resident of St. Claire Gardens
on May 19, 2020 at 10:08 am

Who picks? What's next, bacon, beer, salty snacks? Parent your kids, teach them values and let folks run their businesses in conformance with laws.


31 people like this
Posted by Simple Solution
a resident of Barron Park
on May 19, 2020 at 10:20 am

It's not that big a deal.

By banning vaping products, people can simply return to more traditional tobacco/nicotine laden products (i.e. cigarettes, cigars, pipes etc.).


47 people like this
Posted by about time
a resident of College Terrace
on May 19, 2020 at 10:38 am

My teen got hooked on vaping in HS thanks to Mac's Smoke Shop and can't quit.


33 people like this
Posted by Online Name
a resident of Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on May 19, 2020 at 10:48 am

Destroying businesses like Mac's is a priority during these tough times even though most enforce the adult-only provisions??

Thank heavens PA banned adult-only marijuana dispensaries whose sales are up 400% during Shelter-in-Place, followed by sales of pajamas at a 30% hike, since we obviously don't need the tax revenues.

Seriously, leave adults alone. What's next, banning beer sales that's already illegal for kids?


48 people like this
Posted by Simple Solution
a resident of Barron Park
on May 19, 2020 at 10:48 am

>> "My teen got hooked on vaping in HS thanks to Mac's Smoke Shop and can't quit."

^^^ Chances are that your teen got hooked on vaping via peer influence, a desire not to smoke or curiosity.

Mac's Smoke Shop is merely a vendor & vaping products are also readily available online.


37 people like this
Posted by Silly and destructive
a resident of Downtown North
on May 19, 2020 at 10:49 am

It is self-destructive to smoke. We all know that.

It's also legal, and I cannot believe that - in these times! - the city council would vote to kick stores out of Palo Alto. That's way more destructive than the problem they want to solve (teen vaping). I've never smoked and don't go to any of these shops, but by golly they're here and are productive businesses. Leave them alone.


31 people like this
Posted by anonymous
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on May 19, 2020 at 11:13 am

unreal what a virtuous nanny state this looks like - killing local business would be bad anytime, just look at all the empty storefronts on Cal Ave. But now with a $38 budget deficit that's only going to get worst as more places can't hang on during the SIP?

ban all you want, kids (and adults) will always find a way. this will just send them to sketchier neighborhoods and potentially less safe product from the streets.

don't fool yourselves Palo Alto, you're not helping the kids but you're definitely hurting your so called beloved town.








33 people like this
Posted by Out of touch council
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on May 19, 2020 at 11:27 am

The nanny state of Palo alto strikes again. Led by Lydia kuo, the council had voted to drive businesses from the city. And this is after the city pontificates on how we need to preserve mom and pop business in town.
I guess in Palo alto we have a few know it alls, that seem to think that the adults cannot make sensible decisions on their own.


27 people like this
Posted by Paly Girl
a resident of Midtown
on May 19, 2020 at 11:30 am

What a short-sighted ruling. These shops are under strict regulatory guidelines (exactly like liquor stores and grocery stores) to take strong measures to not sell to minors. If they don't, they lose their license and eventually go out of business. Adults who choose to smoke or vape will just order online, circumventing the tax revenue that otherwise would be deposited into the city, county and state coffers.

From what I understand, this is still America and adults are free to make their own choices...and businesses are free to provide goods and services under reasonable and fair regulations.

To the city council - set the parameters, rake in the taxes, and let the free market decide who stays in business.


17 people like this
Posted by Father of 3
a resident of Midtown
on May 19, 2020 at 11:31 am

"...taking away the right of stores like Mac's from selling tobacco products 'won't solve the teen vaping problem, but it certainly will devastate the livelihood of good upstanding people who aren't responsible for tobacco getting into the hands of teens.'" True, just responsible for getting tobacco into the hands of adults. "Lung cancer is deadly. Lung cancer is the LEADING cancer killer in both men and women in the U.S. More than half of people with lung cancer die within one year of being diagnosed. In 1987, it surpassed breast cancer to become the leading cause of cancer deaths in WOMEN." Look it up.


12 people like this
Posted by TimR
a resident of Downtown North
on May 19, 2020 at 12:18 pm

Smoking is estimated to kill about half a million people a year in the US. In short, far more than the COVID-19 is expected to. So given the current way of thinking, of course smoke shops need to be shut down!


16 people like this
Posted by Resident
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on May 19, 2020 at 12:47 pm

Most teens who vape do not get them from Mac's or any other store. They get them online or from "friends", siblings, etc.

Personally, I liked Mac's and I have never bought anything there to do with smoking, although I have recommend it to out of town guests who smoked. Mac's has other things, some of which are almost impossible to get locally such as international publications and other imported goods.


38 people like this
Posted by "adults"
a resident of Mayfield
on May 19, 2020 at 1:42 pm

Mac's has been selling vaping products to teens with stolen or obviously fake IDs (i.e. height listed as 5'6" for over 6' person) for years. Raw Smoke Shop on Cal Ave does this as well.


21 people like this
Posted by Resident
a resident of Downtown North
on May 19, 2020 at 2:35 pm

Who are all these new posters with strange names? Usual Palo Alto Online posters know the general tone and names of their handles.

Facebook Pro vaping Groups are rabidly discussing Palo Alto meeting last night. Expect a flood for these facebook members who don't even live in Palo Alto to post online here.

The parents of kids are too busy right now homeschooling and working to deal with posting on here.

Parents appreciate the councilors who represented us. Don't let these massive amounts of posts by vapers who don't even live in our city make you think the City residents feel the same way. Palo Alto parents celebrate last night's decision by council.


25 people like this
Posted by JR
a resident of Palo Verde
on May 19, 2020 at 2:44 pm

Electronic cigarettes are illegally marketed toward youths and designed to addict kids at a young age for their entire lives. They should not be sold over the counter under any circumstances. Good for PA for standing up to the billion dollar tobacco industry who is using this new delivery platform to attempt to addict a new generation.

If smoke shops can’t survive without selling products that are targeted toward kids then the shops don’t deserve to exist..


19 people like this
Posted by PA City Nanny Council
a resident of Midtown
on May 19, 2020 at 4:42 pm

We in PA have a $40m budget deficit in the middle of a pandemic and something akin to the Great Depression and this is what PA City Nanny Council spends their time on??? Putting MORE small businesses out of business? Of course vaping is horrible and addictive and just plain evil for teens. I'm a parent of a teen. I know firsthand how awful it is. But apparently the PA City Council is too ignorant to know that teens buy it ONLINE! Just like everything else! So PA now has no marijuana dispenseries (even though it's legal), no smoke shops (for adults who can decide for themselves), and a six page mask order (from people with no medical expertise, that's superfluous because the county Health Dept already recommends masks). Are the PA City Nanny Council members seriously this bored that this is all they accomplish right now with a $40m budget deficit to tackle?


15 people like this
Posted by Joseph E. Davis
a resident of Woodside
on May 19, 2020 at 5:49 pm

The Palo Alto City Council is a disgrace. Adults should make decisions like this for themselves. Not to mention that this is a monumentally terrible time to be outlawing businesses.


9 people like this
Posted by atotic
a resident of Palo Verde
on May 19, 2020 at 6:19 pm

Ridiculous. How can you justify banning vapes, but not tobacco?

I understand that vaping might be more popular tan tobacco among teens. Of course it is, kids are smart and if they are going to do drugs, vaping is the safest choice.

If my kids ever end up doing any, I’d worry much less about vaping, then about tobacco, or liquor. Now we are making the safest choice harder to get.

My guess is that this ban will cause more harm than good.


18 people like this
Posted by Online Name
a resident of Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on May 19, 2020 at 6:44 pm

"Who picks? What's next, bacon, beer, salty snacks? Parent your kids, teach them values and let folks run their businesses in conformance with laws."

Exactly. That plus the insane timing of this is infuriating. Doesn't the CC have anything better to worry about NOW -- like cutting waste in the final budget and helping -- NOT destroying -- our small businesses?

I'll never forget the debate after the state of CA and PA RESIDENTS voted to legalize marijuana for ADULT medical and recreational use. First some in the city proposed that growing marijuana be only allowed inside the homes because neighborhood kids might be tempted to break into our yards and steal the plants. Then they proposed limiting growth to inside the home in LOCKED ROOMS regardless of whether any children lived in that house. Then they reasoned that children MIGHT visit that home and MIGHT be tempted to go rummaging through the hosts' private property!




34 people like this
Posted by Get Real
a resident of Evergreen Park
on May 19, 2020 at 7:53 pm

For heaven's sake, who in his right mind - in this day and age, and especially in California - even opens a smoke shop?


14 people like this
Posted by DTNResident
a resident of Downtown North
on May 19, 2020 at 10:18 pm

Here's the problem. I don't object to the ban per se, but Mac's signed a lease before the ban went into effect based on the laws at the time. Now what are they supposed to do? If they vacate, no retailer is going to take their place during a pandemic only to get the whole business shut down in the second wave. But Mac's will be obligate dot pay its full rent while losing money. This isn't fair to Mac's. The ordinance should be written to allow the business owner to terminate the lease if desired. I abhor smoking, but they were providing a legal product when they signed the lease.


19 people like this
Posted by Online Name
a resident of Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on May 19, 2020 at 11:21 pm

@Get Real, no one's talking about OPENING a smoke shop these days except maybe the VC's who treasure their cigar but it's really outrageous for the CC to move to destroy Mac's, one of the oldest businesses in the city.

You'd think the CC would have other priorities these days.

And if parents can't educate and train their kids, that's their problem and shouldn't have to become mine.


5 people like this
Posted by Sarcasm
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on May 19, 2020 at 11:50 pm

We also need to shut down stores that sell flavored alcohol to minors. You’re next Walgreens!


9 people like this
Posted by Jay
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on May 20, 2020 at 9:51 am

I remember when you could walk into Macs and get a sports or car magazine, a fine cigar and have a nice conversation with the owner. Good old days!


2 people like this
Posted by Member
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on May 20, 2020 at 11:06 am

If school is back then a closed campus is needed to limit exposure to pandemic viruses and dark soulless adults selling damaging drugs to children children are not adults and should have no opportunity to get vaping supplies. The stores violating laws by selling to minors should lose their license.

Police also should just go to Max’s at brunch and lunch at the hs times and enforce codes.


14 people like this
Posted by Online Name
a resident of Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on May 20, 2020 at 11:35 am

Children trying to buy adult-only goods should get also arrested, too, since they're the perps and often look way older than their years.

Seriously, it's worth remembering WHY sales of vapes have soared: because smoking tobacco is now banned throughout PA everywhere except single-family homes. Because vapes give off minimal smoke and odor, people living in apartments and condos have turned to vaping.


3 people like this
Posted by thankgoodness
a resident of Fairmeadow
on May 20, 2020 at 1:47 pm

Thank goodness we don't have to worry about e-cigs or vaping in Palo Alto anymore. The next question is when will we ban recreational weed and then alcohol?


16 people like this
Posted by Rick
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on May 20, 2020 at 3:41 pm

Stupid. I'll just drive to Mountain View. Never make a law that is unenforceable or pointless (like the idling ban). It makes you look foolish and encourages disrespect for the law.


14 people like this
Posted by PA City Nanny Council
a resident of Midtown
on May 20, 2020 at 4:52 pm

The City Council should've consulted some public health experts before they (a group with zero medical or public health policy expertise) banned the sale in Palo Alto.

A study published in Science Magazine: "the prohibitionist” policies that ban e-cigarettes just might be doing more harm than good, argue a group of public health experts in an opinion piece published today in Science. Author Amy Fairchild, dean of Ohio State University’s College of Public Health . . . We suggest that the evidence warns against prohibitionist measures. Restricting access and appeal among less harmful vaping products out of an abundance of caution while leaving deadly combustible products on the market does not protect public health."

Web Link

Wired Magazine 12/12/2019 has a great article that references this study published in Science Magazine titled: "Anti-Vape Laws Could Do More Harm Than Good. Banning vaping just might drive teens to the black market—and send adult smokers back to their cancer sticks."

Web Link

Apparently, the PA City Council thinks they know better than the Public Health Experts.


12 people like this
Posted by PaloAltan
a resident of Triple El
on May 20, 2020 at 5:30 pm

Why are we piling more regulations on when we just need to enforce the laws we have. Why can't we arrest kids under 18 who are caught vaping and send them to Juvenile Hall? I seem to recall that being a pretty good deterrent for bad behavior way back when I was youth growing up in Palo Alto. Why are we so easy on our kids now a'days? We are not helping them out. They will leave Palo Alto at 18 and run amok in the wider world w/o the shelter of the Palo Alto nanny state. Let's ensure our kids grow up to learn how important it is to make the right choices and the consequences when they don't!


9 people like this
Posted by ALB
a resident of College Terrace
on May 20, 2020 at 8:24 pm

Mac's Smoke Shop will survive as it has for over eighty five years. Vaping has not been around that long to be the main source of income for this historical business. Vaping destroys lungs. So we will all need to run into Mac's and buy other items to support this great shop. The council did the right thing. My dad bought his cigars there. A dear friend always buys his pipe tobacco there. The Khoury's business will adapt.


5 people like this
Posted by Anon
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on May 20, 2020 at 8:48 pm

Alb

Yes let’s all support poisons if all kinds and cancer for the historic mac shop

Swing family that smoke die of lung and throat cancer not worth it .


10 people like this
Posted by Online Name
a resident of Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on May 20, 2020 at 9:21 pm

Yes, let's also shut down all the bars and stop restaurants from serving booze, too.

Lots of people die of liver and kidney disease and it's just not worth it.


8 people like this
Posted by Sellers
a resident of Downtown North
on May 21, 2020 at 12:19 am

They will not need to sell vaping products if they sell toilet paper, paper towels, and hand sanitizer (and meat)!


6 people like this
Posted by BryceMmm
a resident of Midtown
on May 21, 2020 at 8:52 am

It’s sad watching the public turn against vaping. The vape tax next year is going to be way more money than the cigarette tax. There are now two on vape products. A “tobacco tax“ and a “vape tax” while cigarettes only have the tobacco tax. I can’t afford that so it’s back to cigarettes or buying black market vape products but those have already claimed dozens of people. I’d rather be broke than dead though.

I’m sorry if this is a duplicate. I’m not sure if my comment is going through.


4 people like this
Posted by ALB
a resident of College Terrace
on May 21, 2020 at 5:46 pm

So MEA CULPA on me because I assumed that banning vaping products was the sole concern here and did not take into consideration that some flavored tabacco including pipe cherry tobacco would be included. One of our old friends has been buying his cherry tobacco at Mac's for DECADES. In college we smoked clove cigarettes. I promptly quit smoking at age twenty three for fear of getting addicted and ultimately the big C. I smoked Shermans and Gauloises. Mac's has always sold cherry tobacco for pipe smokers etc. Therefore I do think that the council has overreached. BAN the vaping technology. Period. Let Mac's sell pipe tobacco. I apologize for early post because I thought the council was only going to take up vaping products only. It is true that JUUL targeted youth with their cute flavors. And it is also true that many people have permanently scarred lungs because of this faux promise of helping people quit smoking. No, young people think it is cool to vape because they think they are immortal. So the city council needs to ban this hyped product: vaping technology and redo the vote. My old man bought cigars there. I buy magazines and candy from time to time. Mac's is an institution.


2 people like this
Posted by Mark Weiss
a resident of Downtown North
on May 23, 2020 at 11:09 pm

This is a mistake. But to remedy maybe city Council can pass a resolution requiring residents to do like I do and read 20 newspapers a week.


8 people like this
Posted by Oldster
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on May 24, 2020 at 12:57 am

My hometown closing a heritage mom & pop shop, the only place downtown with a decent selection of newsapers and magazines plus snacks open after normal business hours, makes no sense - especailly when there is no date our public libraries will reopen!. All closing Mac's will do is devastate a mom & pop business while sending more business to 7/11... and put yet another downtown property under max density redevelopment pressure.

If I were a conspiracy theorist, I'd be watching for someone to submit a redevelopement plan for Mac's land. Nice views for a penthouse thanks to historic buildings on either side.

Prohibition of alcohol by the US Constitution only created a bigger market for liquor by titilating twits with the "taboo" fun of it.
Closing Mac's under presuure from parents acting like Carrie Nation is not sound government policy nor will any attempted social engineering land use Prohibition reduce the number teens from sneaking tobacco products.


4 people like this
Posted by Mark Weiss
a resident of Downtown North
on May 24, 2020 at 7:46 pm

The Khoury's published an 80-word broadside with their view on this story and a call to action. They are partly right in that unlike the other businesses impacted, they are a marketplace of ideas. I buy roughly 10 newspapers there per week, easily $1,000 per year on that, magazines, plus pork rinds, and juice, the rare Nabisco product. I bought Take Five bars with two different packagings, intending to write about appropriation.

The location is great, they can survive the blow. They could do more with their logo -- they sell t-shirts but of a weak design.
I've opined here hundreds of times plus posted 2,600 articles to my own blog, (which itself and in its name protested installing fake grass at the Page Mill soccer fields, but also covers local news and jazz music, for ten years).
Maybe Mac's Smoke Shop could publish "Smoke Signals" that covers this dispute and other pro-retail, unique to Palo Alto issues.
Maybe I'd pay them to handle an exclusive weekly broadside based on "Plastic Alto".
I'd ditch a lot of the bongs and pipes, piled embarrasingly high. Likewise "Black Teen Virgins Who Like to Get Fucked" -- this paper won't even print the title.
Maybe the successor beneficiary landlords would give them a break.
But if Neil and Lori Khoury can step to the step of the true spirit of Palo Alto, they can not only persevere but prevail.


4 people like this
Posted by Resident 1-Adobe Meadows
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on May 24, 2020 at 10:47 pm

YEAH - the flu is a respiratory disease. And smoke shops just add to the over all problem. Compromising your internal organs.

I grew up in LA when it was so smoggy that we could not go out and play at recess. Sometimes we had to just put our heads on the desks at recess. Eventually it started to clear up.

And growing up - my parents smoked. I keep worrying that I will still end up with lung cancer at this late date. That generation grew up that way.

And as a young adult I was around people that smoked pot in college - SO COOL. NO - hated it. I get shots for pneumonia to try and protect my lungs. Make anything that goes into the lungs or air around your head go away.


4 people like this
Posted by anonymous
a resident of Charleston Gardens
on May 25, 2020 at 6:43 am

probably business is slow with school out and parents watching kids closer

Good to see stores selling to minors closing for any reason. They should be ashamed of the damage they caused.


Like this comment
Posted by Anon
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on May 25, 2020 at 2:38 pm

I'm going to have to go contrarian *again* on this one. Just because something is a small business doesn't make it worth saving. There used to be an "adult" "book" store along ECR near the end of town - I can't remember exactly where it was - maybe where the new Homewood Suites is? -- doesn't matter. But, it was a small business, presumably located far from schools, like smoke shops and pot shops should be now. Now, a smoke shop which sells a product that reduces your life expectancy by 8-10 years is suddenly sacred because it is a small business? It would have been amusing if the adult bookstore was still there and got the same kind of adulation. Come on, get real.

Here is my contrarian view: how about we create a safety net for all employees of all businesses big and small? Speaking for myself, I would rather pay someone to work out all day than pay them to sell CCC's (cancer-causing-chemicals) to people at a smoke shop. Next, we can find something more constructive for them to do for a living. Nanny State? Sure, if you are blowing smoke, or vape, in my face.


8 people like this
Posted by Online Name
a resident of Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on May 25, 2020 at 3:01 pm

"Good to see stores selling to minors closing for any reason. They should be ashamed of the damage they caused."

1) Rarely do we see a police blotter report without at least arrest for an adult possessing a false id. There's one such arrest in the latest edition which reminds me how common a crime it is.

How many MINORS are ever caught, arrested or fined since they're the ones perpetrating the crime?? Where's the parental responsibility? And as kids, did you never illegally consume beer, wine, whatever as a youthful indiscretion and still grow up fine?? Since when did we become such a nanny state?

2) Los Alto also passed an anti-vape law but was smart and nuanced enough to leave flavored tobacco alone since it's sold primarily to ADULT PIPE SMOKERS and has been for DECADES. Think of your grandfather and/or favorite professor smoking his SWEET-smelling cherry or chocolate pipe tobacco.

Also, this weekend's edition of the other paper has a front-page story about Mac's, its history and its trusted place in this community.

@Anon, re adult stores, there is / was a branch of the famous Good Vibrations sex toy emporium right downtown with tastefully masked windows.
Re shortened life expectancy, that's an adult decision and whether one decides to shorten one's life by smoking, eating red meat and sugar or drinking booze or Chlorox, it's the decision of that adult.

Should we ban Chlorox sales??


Like this comment
Posted by Anon
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on May 25, 2020 at 3:16 pm

@Online_Name

>> Re shortened life expectancy, that's an adult decision and whether one decides to shorten one's life by smoking, eating red meat and sugar or drinking booze or Chlorox, it's the decision of that adult. Should we ban Chlorox sales??

But, that wasn't my point. My point was that I'm tired of tip-toeing around everything because "it is a small business". A *small business* that is in business to sell people Clorox *to drink* doesn't deserve kid-glove treatment either.

To answer your question about banning things: I'm generally not in favor of banning. I think a reasonable compromise is to restrict stores that sell Clorox to drink to the same low-rent "fun" neighborhood with the adult bookstores and smoke shops. Too bad hyper-gentrification has cleared out the low-rent district.


6 people like this
Posted by Online Name
a resident of Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on May 25, 2020 at 3:42 pm

@Anon, you brought up life expectancy originally and now you're calling downtown PA a "low-rent "fun" neighborhood" since that's where Mac's and Good Vibrations are/were? Alert the Chamber of Commerce!

It'a obviously impossible for businesses -- small or otherwise -- to determine the intent of each Chlorox buyer.


2 people like this
Posted by Mark Weiss
a resident of Downtown North
on May 25, 2020 at 4:15 pm

I think flavored tobacco at Mac's to adults should be grandfathered in.
Leadership should work with the landlord to give Mac's a break while they figure out what to shelve to displace the offensive-by-decree items.
Further research indicates they also sell a pretty good $2 cup of Joe that is a bargain compared to the places usually buy from.
The title I found objectionable -- see above --is Cherry Boxxx Pictures "Black Virgin Teens" and it says they are over 18 years of age and has contact info for the publisher, although the title is from 2005. Seven-ninety-nine reduced from $13.99 originally. I opted instead for Living Blues Magazine with a plain black cover "50th" anniversary issue, mainly for the ad for Ruthie Foster Big Band live album ("evokes Ellington, Sinatra") on Blue Corn Records. (There were also magazines such as Marie Claire, Sports Illustrated and National Geographic with more wholesome and respectable images of black people, if you excuse the digression into race).
I spoke to the owner Neil Khoury about the possibility of eliminating the porn section of his store, which is behind a beaded curtain. But there is a difference between stores deliberately changing their wares for their own reasons and their hand being forced by government over-reach, which is how Dubois rightly describes his board's unfortunate result.
I also bought a Gatorade, due to the heat. Earlier today, I had bought The Times, The Chron and the Merc.


Like this comment
Posted by Mark Weiss
a resident of Downtown North
on May 26, 2020 at 5:18 am

When I cut and pasted the headline to my blog it became “Palo Alto Smoke Shops to shutter City Council” talk about civic engagement


Like this comment
Posted by Marco
a resident of Stanford
on May 26, 2020 at 7:30 am

To get nicotine into your bloodstream, you smoke or you vape. City Council does not ban smoking but it bans vaping. How does that make any sense?


2 people like this
Posted by Resident 1-Adobe Meadows
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on May 26, 2020 at 9:22 am

ANON - your comments concerning the personnel at smoke shops - if you look at the pot shops in Oakland it is culture thing for them. They dress the part, act the part, and live the part. Some guy in a van makes deliveries to some residents on my block - and he looks the part and acts the part. That young man thinks he is VERY COOL.
And the older people who go into those shops think they are reliving their UC Berkley days of being a radical. And if you go to the pet shop they now have a dog treat that has CBD in it. It is a cultural activity that goes beyond the individuals health.


4 people like this
Posted by Resident
a resident of Meadow Park
on May 26, 2020 at 10:19 pm

How many of these store owners - specifically, of Mac's Smoke Shop, Raw Smoke Shop, Red Brick Café & Hookah Nites Lounge, Smoke and More, and Smokes and Vapes - are residents of Palo Alto? I doubt many are. If these stores close, there will be very little negative effect on Palo Alto residents, which should be our main concern. These owners can open shops somewhere else and sell their unhealthy garbage to people other than Palo Altans.


6 people like this
Posted by Resident
a resident of Meadow Park
on May 26, 2020 at 10:33 pm

1. "The council's decision to institute a ban on vaping mirrors a similar action taken by Santa Clara County last November." So people want Palo Alto to be the only city in the county to sell this stuff? Do you realize every vaper in the county would then be coming into Palo Alto to buy and use vaping products?

2. These shops survived before vaping became popular. They'll be okay if they decide to adapt. In fact, with all of us sheltering-at-home, I bet their business has been booming for the last 2 months so they're probably not hurting.


18 people like this
Posted by has it started yet?
a resident of Evergreen Park
on Jun 10, 2020 at 11:37 pm

From what I've seen this week, Mac's Smoke Shop and Cal Ave seems to be doing a brisk business. Are they still able to sell vaping devices and cartridges? If not, perhaps they've compensated with increased sales of bongs or tobacco.


2 people like this
Posted by Sam
a resident of College Terrace
on Jun 21, 2020 at 3:07 pm

City council discriminating on minority owned business.


Like this comment
Posted by CrescentParkAnon.
a resident of Crescent Park
on Jun 21, 2020 at 8:39 pm

Closing down legal businesses they may not like is not what the City government should be doing.
It is legislative over-reach at the local level. It should be actionable on the part of Mac's who should
threaten to sue the city if they are singled out like this.

As long as they do not chronically sell things to minors that they should not - there is nothing here
the City needs to be involved in that I can see or understand.

As many have mentioned Mac sells newspapers and magazines that one cannot find anywhere
else since all the bookstores have closed down. That is enough of a service that this oppression
of Mac's just seems really unfair.

Leave them be.

I've lived in Palo Alto since 1970 and maybe been to Mac's 10 times, so it is not my favorite place,
but the times I was there I saw nothing amiss going on and a good business that had something
I wanted to buy at the time.

Why the attacks on these businesses?


Don't miss out on the discussion!
Sign up to be notified of new comments on this topic.

Email:


Post a comment

In order to encourage respectful and thoughtful discussion, commenting on stories is available to those who are registered users. If you are already a registered user and the commenting form is not below, you need to log in. If you are not registered, you can do so here.

Please make sure your comments are truthful, on-topic and do not disrespect another poster. Don't be snarky or belittling. All postings are subject to our TERMS OF USE, and may be deleted if deemed inappropriate by our staff.

See our announcement about requiring registration for commenting.


Get fact-based reporting on the COVID-19 crisis sent to your inbox daily.

Fighting an 'uphill battle,' Palo Alto's longtime MacArthur Park to close until 2021
By Elena Kadvany | 1 comment | 4,388 views

Do peaceful protests do any good? How about the more violent ones?
By Diana Diamond | 7 comments | 2,524 views

Traffic Lights for the Whole Family
By Chandrama Anderson | 1 comment | 1,938 views

Did a hedge fund just steal your EV rebate?
By Sherry Listgarten | 0 comments | 1,370 views

Tough back-to-school decisions
By Cheryl Bac | 0 comments | 361 views