Small Minds Think Small Thoughts
Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Saturday, September 24, 2011
In the region where I attended and graduated university, and later resided for many years, there has been an ongoing ruckus.
As a bit of background for the reader, Northwest Alabama is geographically comprised of Lauderdale and Colbert counties. The two counties are separated by the Tennessee River, with Lauderdale on the Northern side, which county also borders Tennessee. Regardless of what anyone says otherwise, there has been a great sense of superiority, or of “looking down” the nose at Colbert county by Lauderdale countians. Lauderdale county hosts the university, while Colbert county hosts the community/junior college. Colbert county has historically been a blue-collar, labor-oriented community, while Lauderdale county has historically been a retail/white collar-oriented community. Colbert county is wet – allows beverage alcohol sales – whereas Lauderdale county is dry, and only a few select locales within it are wet.
I happened to read a recent story about the prospects that Sheffield city officials (Sheffield is in Colbert county) have suggested which would permit off-premises Sunday sales of beverage alcohol in the hopes it could boost to the city’s ailing economy. It is currently the only Colbert county municipality that has on-premises Sunday sales. According to the article, no other municipality has off-premise Sunday sales.
What I read in the article reinforced in my estimation the notion that the area remains very backwards oriented.
Here is an excerpt in context from the article.
But not everyone agrees that Sunday sales will be a good fit for Sheffield.
“It would put Sheffield in a position that I don’t feel comfortable with,” Councilman Gary Scales said.
Scales said he didn’t want Sheffield to be the only city in the Shoals with off-premises beer and wine sales.
“I don’t believe that the benefits would outweigh the stigma that would come with it,” Scales said. “I know there’s revenue out there, but you can get it in a restaurant and you can get it (in stores) six days a week. To me, I just don’t want Sheffield to be known as the city where you can get it on Sunday when you can’t get it anywhere else.”
Councilwoman Janet McLeary, who was appointed to the council after the death of her husband, Ronnie McLeary, said she opposes Sunday alcohol sales.
“I really can’t say I’m for that,” McLeary said. “It kind of goes against what I believe in with my church and all.”
McLeary said she would need more information about the issue before making a final decision.
“I would probably be against it,” she said.
At the Sept. 19 council meeting where Johnson addressed the issue, Councilwoman Mary Stevens said legal Sunday package sales might help reduce the number of bootleggers in the city.
“It would put a lot of them out of business,” Stevens said.
“The stigma that would come with it…”
“Kind of goes against what I believe in with my church and all.”
I simply can’t imagine that there are still people in this day and age that cannot effectively articulate their positions on any issue, much less one which they hold or espouse.
As regarding the issue of beverage alcohol consumption and religion – specifically Christian religion – Christ‘s first miracle was turning water into wine at a wedding party. And as I once read an explanation of the story by a pastor whom also worked at a brewery, (paraphrasing) ‘Jesus loved a good party, and conjured a miracle of making wine precisely to keep the party rolling.’
In this case we’re not talking about selling a product to abuse it, but rather to enjoy it. Were we to apply the same rule to food as they seem to be with beverage alcohol, we would deny sale of food to obese people. Makes no sense, does it?