Arcata would do better instead of trying to ban smoking and public drinking, to be progressive and build a cool place for folks that do that to hang out that's fairly close to the downtown square. Set aside some city property or buy a space, and make it a cool, fun, hassle-free place for kids to hang out. Instead of being draconian.
Smokers buy things downtown too, businesses shouldn't drive them away, but instead find a compromise that works for everyone. These types of policy disputes occur when one side insists that only its view is correct, or for health or other perceived business reasons its draconian views about an issue "must" be imposed on everyone else. Compromise.
Just a thought. But a really good one.Sarah Isbell, Eureka