Myrtle Beach area media personality, mom, and business woman, Mande Wilkes, wrote a must read article on the city of Myrtle Beach’s recent ban. Locals have been sharing the article city and county wide all day.
Last week Myrtle Beach City Council and Mayor Brenda Bethune voted in a ban on Ocean Boulevard merchant sales of certain products. Mayor Bethune and City Manager John Pedersen admitted to the media that the products were legal. They stated the products would continue to be sold in all other areas of the city. Mayor Bethune, who owns Better Brands Beer Distributors, said she did not believe the products were “Family Friendly”.
The vote was 5 for with 2 against a new overlay district. The new district will run from 6th Avenue South to 16th Avenue North on Ocean Boulevard and to the just West side of Business Highway 17 (not including store fronts on the west side) on those same streets. The banned products include: CBD oils, alternative nicotine, vapor products, and e-cigarettes. Councilmen Mike Lowder and Gregg Smith voted against the measure.
Wrote Wilkes, “Why did the city target this particular stretch? Certainly not because of a legitimate public safety concern. Of 136 arrests that occurred within the very recent past, 53 were alcohol-related. Not a single one of those arrests involved any of the banned items.
Officials claim their actions are in service of engineering family-friendliness, but all evidence points to more sinister intentions.
It appears that nearly 100 percent of affected businesses are owned or operated by Jewish people. Whether that’s by design or mere coincidence, the effect is that Jews — a protected class under the Constitution — are being disproportionately displaced by the city’s bizarre vote.
Even more galling is the deprivation of property rights. Any sane zoning decision uses a “grandfather” provision to preserve existent businesses. In the absence of this very ordinary provision, expect in the coming months to see shuttered store fronts and foreclosure signs and a much longer line at the unemployment office.
Downtown could be a ghost town by Dec. 31, when the law, unless challenged, will take effect.
The prevailing bedrock of our justice system is predictability: Courts routinely reject laws that are arbitrary, hasty and vague.
Imagine what potential investors are thinking right now! Surely they’re reluctant to sign leases, take out mortgages, purchase inventory, install fixtures, and open their doors when, at any moment, local government can waste it all with the wave of a hand.”