RIMSHOT: Cool it
MISSOURI SEN. Bill Alter, R-High Ridge, wants to ban the sale of cold beer in convenience stores. Any storekeeper who sells a cold one could have his liquor license lifted. Beer-to-go would be kept at 60 degrees or warmer.
Even by the standards of the Missouri Legislature, this is remarkably dumb idea.
Oh, we understand the impulse - save the weak-willed from temptation. Turning a cold-and-frosty into a warm-and-nasty might cut down on drunk driving. And look at all the energy it will save: thousands of convenience stores will raise the thermostats in their coolers from 35 to 60 degrees.
On the other hand, most drunk drivers are already drunk before they get into their vehicles. And if they're really drunk, they won't notice that the beer is warm. For the 99 percent of customers who are responsible consumers, the warm-beer bill is a nanny-state nuisance. What's next? Why not mandate warm low-calorie beer? We'd bring on a healthy shrinking of beer bellies from Cape Girardeau to St. Joseph.
Sen. Alter - Warm Beer Bill to his friends - said the idea came from an 11-year-old constituent. That's who nannies are for.
As a former police officer, I suppose State Sen. Alter has some anecdotal evidence regarding cold beer being an inticement to drive drunk. However, as the P-D points out, this likely won't have an impact on those that are already drunk - or if it does, the only impact will be that they will have coolers in their car.
I would be interested to know the party breakdown on this issue... Could the state Dem party ride this to the November elections, with the rallying cry of "Cold Beer for All!!!"? It's probably more likely that the liberal wing of the Missouri Democratic Party thinks this is just a grand old idea... but it would be interesting to find out.
I'd just be ticked that I'd have to wait that extra hour or so after bringing my beer home before I'd be able to enjoy it while watching the
Another thought that Alter might consider is the banning of single-can beer sales (the 24 and 36 oz cans). If someone's going to drink a beer while driving, by golly they should have a whole 6-pack (or more!) in the car to make sure they get heavily intoxicated.
Perhaps the most effective way to combat drunk driving is to take a multi-faceted approach. Similar to the
I'm sure Brian J. agrees with me on this position...
ARC: St Wendeler