Wednesday, March 07, 2012

Dear Effingham County: Some of You Are Idiots

Photo, kagey_b, Flickr Creative Commons

Last year the state legislature made it legal for retail stores to sell alcohol on Sunday, but passed the buck down to local governments to decide if they wanted to allow it within their borders or not. I was cool with this. In areas of government where large amounts of money or expertise aren't needed*, I think control should be shifted to as local of an office as possible. Despite being really more of a liberal, I very much do have some libertarian leanings.

This election season has seen many local ballots present the issue of Sunday sales to the voters. It'll never come up where I live, as we still don't allow hard liquor to be sold at all in the county (just beer and wine), and although the county offers pouring licenses for restaurants, no restaurant in the county actually offers alcohol. I think Sunday sales may be a little too far out there for our mainstream residents. However, the people of the more densely populated counties and municipalities in the state are more advanced than my own people. Effingham County is one of the locales who voted on the issue yesterday and the article about the results in the Savannah paper surprised me.

Effingham wasn't just voting for Sunday retail sales; they were also voting for Sunday restaurant sales. If the people of the county were sensible, they would have just voted yes on both issues, but instead, one passed and one failed. Liquor stores and grocery store beer aisles will continue to be shut on Sundays in Effingham while the local Applebee's can pour to its heart's content.

This is idiotic. I don't even care that some people are ironically opposed to alcohol for religious reasons. Doesn't matter than the dominant figure in most of their religions actually made wine as one of his miracles. Religion is religion and I bet most of the people who voted on that basis voted consistently. I have less of a problem with people who disagree with me consistently than I do with people who seem random in their opinions.

And voting for restaurants sales while banning store sales is the most idiotic thing I've ever heard of. If you're buying in a store, you're probably taking it home or at least some other private residence where you're less likely to get on the road after drinking. Sure, there are exceptions to this, but you're vastly less likely to drive drunk from what you bought at a store than what you buy in a bar where you're prevented from taking the beverage off premises. If you drink at a restaurant bar, you basically have to drive home, especially in a place like Effingham where public transportation is not an option.

To be fair, there was only about a 1 percent difference in the votes for the two issues, so there was likely only a small minority voting this way. (It was a very close vote in both cases.) I just feel sorry for the reasonable citizens of Effingham. In the end, they all get painted with the same idiot brush wielded by dumbasses who pick their opinions at random.

*It is silly that if I ran for sheriff in my county and won that I would be the sheriff. Seriously, the requirements for being a deputy are higher than the requirements for the elected office in charge of the department. At least the deputies have to have the same training as police. Same for education. It's too expensive to leave solely in the hands of incredibly poor counties like where I live. I think federal hands should be have an almost non-existent grip on the reins, but I think Rick Santorum is an idiot when he says states shouldn't be involved in education.


Julie said...

I wore my "I voted" sticker proudly for supporting Sunday liquor sales. Woohoo!

Courtney said...

Well, 1 for 2 is better than 0 for 2, I guess.

I have some libertarian leanings too. I think libertarians actually have more in common with liberals in a lot of ways than they do with conservatives. Republicans talk a big game about small government, but some policies they propose are about as intrusive as government can get.