Letter to the editor written in response to businesses promoting alcohol sales
It seemed ironic to me, that in last week’s paper concerning alcohol sales in Blanding, a large anti-drinking advertisement also ran. Then I read the Court Report and noted the number of drug and alcohol abuse felonies. Thus the conflict is presented in black in white. As we consider the economic factors presented, we need to ask, just how many people will benefit financially from such sales? And what will be the cost to taxpayers in policing, and rehabilitating users of those sales?
There is already a strong pervasive message in media today. Movies, television, reality shows, music, and even Facebook scream at us that we can’t possibly have fun of any kind unless alcohol is involved. Hollywood along with partner corporations send strong “amoral” messages to our youth, and we allow it because money drives advertising, and branding on shows. Is economic viability of more concern in a community than health, morals, education, or social issues? Too many youth and adults in our nation have already sold their heritage of health and happiness for a mess of pottage in the name of gain and greed. Economics is not the only concern our community should have.
I personally find it an extreme stretch in the argument, that anyone would choose to eat or not eat in Blanding, simply because they can’t have alcohol. I’ve visited lots of countries and just because I couldn’t have a rootbeer, in Egypt, or Wales, was no reason to dismiss the experience of dining in a new location. There are other highs in life to enjoy, not dependent upon alcohol. That is the greater message that youth need to see and hear, and that we all need to understand.
I agree that it would been great if new business growth occurred in the town, but at the same time I haven’t seen the Chamber of Commerce functioning in any progressive creative way for many years. I think there are more important things to promote and encourage than grasping at “spirits.” We don’t need another Jersey Shore nor more youth in juvenile court. We need to promote blue skies, clean air, gorgeous rocks, hiking, rappelling, boating, fishing, and health.
Part of my bias is based upon why we came here in the first place, 43 years ago. Blanding was a good place to raise a family. We felt the community supported the values we deemed important, and we felt safe here and we still feel that way. As long term residents, albeit “newcomers” to the community, it seems more important that the community should reflect what makes us STAY, not a temporary alcohol fix that opens a Pandora’s box of even more problems.
Sincerely, Steve and Janet Wilcox