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Sunday liquor by the drink

[ 0 ] January 15, 2014 |

Lakeviews
By John M. Wylie II, Publisher 

Rogers  County  Commissioners are expected to call an election soon to consider allowing liquor by the drink on Sundays, Thanksgiving and Christmas in Rogers County.

In modern America, with tourism as a major industry, allowing liquor by the drink here is probably a necessity.

But in crafting the ballot language, we think maintaining some controls may also be wise.

Sunday is a day when many families spend much of their time attending worship and other activities at their churches.

For some who are older, driving to and from church functions may be one of the few times they regularly drive each week.

While full-service restaurants that also offer full bar service would be unlikely to pose problems if that service was provided Sunday, stand-alone bars that offer no food or just snacks are a different story.

We can identify at least one bar in each of the three commission districts that we believe would pose a public safety hazard if they were allowed to provide full service on Sundays.

Each is on a busy thoroughfare in an unincorporated part of the county, and each has several churches located nearby.

Each also has a reputation in law enforcement circles for not ensuring that its patrons don’t drink too much, then drive.

That is not a good combination.

We don’t have a problem with liquor by the drink on Sundays at restaurants that also offer bar service. But we believe there are legitimate public safety issues that require continued restrictions on bar-only facilities, especially in unincorporated areas where law enforcement patrols cannot be as concentrated as they are in cities and towns.

There’s no reason to rush. If we’re going to make a change, let’s make certain we do it right.

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Category: Opinion

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