Save Vape LA was simply an idea just over a week ago. In that time, the #IMPROOF Movement and the Save Vape LA sponsors were able to transform that idea in to a reality.
Saturday, March 8th, hundreds of local vapers gathered at Pershing Square in Downtown, Los Angeles. The Save Vape LA rally was held in response to the Los Angeles City Council’s unanimous vote to ban the use of electronic cigarettes in many public venues. The attending crowd consisted of e-cig consumers, manufacturers, business owners, activists, and even the pioneer of the first electronic cigarette!
Herbert Gilbert, who invented the e-cigarette in 1963, was a keynote speaker at Save Vape LA. “Show me the fire if that’s smoke,” was Mr. Gilbert’s request to all those who believe electronic cigarettes are the same, or that they should be considered the same as conventional cigarettes.
John Cameron, CEO of Emperor Brand electronic cigarettes, also spoke at the rally. His use of tobacco product props, an e-cigarette from the crowd, and purely practical thinking broke down the basic differences between the two. As he brought his comments to a close, he encouraged those attending to speak up for what we all believe in by communicating with those refusing to see e-cigarettes as the technology they are.
The President of Craft Vapery, Joshua Krane, shared his personal story with the audience. He spoke of the years he spent smoking two packs a day, which consequently led to COPD at the age of 33. After being introduced to electronic cigarettes three weeks after his diagnosis, he never looked back, and has been enjoying his life smoke free ever since.
Phillip Daman, President of SFATA and attorney for Daman & Associates, spent his time on stage applauding the success of ex-smokers worldwide. Graciously offering words of appreciation to all those who attended Save Vape LA, while inviting everyone to take pride in their own #IMPROOF success.
Phillip’s invitation encouraged many of the people present to do exactly that. For the last hour of the rally, the #IMPROOF media wall was a backdrop for anyone willing to share their own experiences and testimony. As folks lined up to say a quick word, the success of the situation really sunk in.
Yes the ordinance was passed, and could possibly lead to a new law in these upcoming weeks, but the unity of this community became crystal clear at the rally. It didn’t matter what vape shop you work for or frequent, the kind of e-liquid you use was irrelevant, your hardware preferences were yours to own, and those attending were proud to be part of something so significant for our industry.
For many of us, vaping not only changed our lives, it saved our lives. The thought that something as minute as a lack of understanding could more or less destroy what we, as an industry, have worked to achieve is quite frightening. The Save Vape LA rally was successful at bringing people together, and providing vapers with the platform needed for their voices to be heard.
As the afternoon went on, we gave away hundreds of Save Vape LA T-shirts. Vapers lined up to have their shirts signed by Mr. Gilbert before snapping a quick photo with the inventor of electronic cigarettes. Attendants were also able to enjoy sampling e-liquids at the VapeRev booth before choosing a free bottle of juice to take home!
Once they had their new juice, they were able to have their atomizers rebuilt for free by the guys of Craft Vapery. Their booth was equipped with everything needed to rebuild any atty thrown their way!
The rally itself was a great experience. The diversity and positive mentality put forth at Save Vape LA was a monumental moment for the e-cigarette industry, and we are truly humbled by all the powerful stories of leaving tobacco behind.
The #IMPROOF Movement couldn’t have made this happen alone, and we’d like to thank the following sponsors for their time, energy, and efforts in bringing the first #IMPROOF event to life!
Daman & Associates Attorneys
We eagerly await our next opportunity to work together. Let’s show the world what #IMPROOF stands for!