This was originally posted to the "medical marijuana" story. I figured I'd post it here, as well:
As a Danville business owner in the food & beverage business (and no, I won't tell you which one, due to the possibility of the pitchforks coming out), I can tell you a few things as it relates to drug abuse, NIMBYism, and whether or not Danville has a holier-than-thou attitude. Here's my take:
1) Compared to ANY other city I've owned a business (and I've owned 'em in some big ones and some small ones like Danville), the amount of alcoholism, binge drinking, cocaine, and prescription medication abuse in Danville is STAGGERING.
2) The reason why #1 is not better known or understood is because of the over-reliance on lawyers and therapists. For all the talk in Danville of personal responsibility, the reality is that when it comes down to a DUI or some other infraction, the majority of residents would rather 'lawyer up' than accept their fault.
3) On the subject of DUIs, I know that many residents and business owners complain of over-enforcement. While I agree that the Danville PD is probably at a loss for things to do to keep themselves occupied, I would also say that I've seen an inordinate number of folks in this town REFUSE to take cabs (even after begging from my staff!) and then proceed to drive while obviously intoxicated.
4) As it pertains to medical marijuana, don't kid yourselves, people - marijuana is for all intents and purposes LEGAL. It is being grown in Danville RIGHT NOW. Danville residents purchase it from local dealers, or travel into SF or Oakland if they don't have a local connect. I would go so far as to venture that over 3/4 of Danville residents between the ages of 21-40 smoke pot regularly.
5) With regard to Danville being a "family" town, the divorce, philandering, and scandal in this town belies its status in this area. I've seen 40-something moms with 20-something daughters out "partying" with each other (doing coke, drinking to excess, etc.) and hitting on the same 20-something boys. I've heard women brag in great detail of their "pool-boy" side-dishes. I've heard men brag in great detail about how many women they've slept with under the noses of their supposedly-faithful wives. Again, I would venture that the divorce rate in Danville is most likely higher than that of any of its peers.
In short, I believe that Danville is a highly dysfunctional community, one that tries desperately to keep up the false appearance of high morals and small-town values. In reality, it is a base, nouveau-riches, hypocritical place that once had the glory of being a truly idyllic ranching and farming community.