Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Beer Revolutions

I'm all for relaxing liquor laws and restricting the PLCB, so at first glance State Sen. John Rafferty's proposed new bill to expand beer sales sounds great. But even I have to blink an eye and hold on a minute when I read this:

'A crowd of about 150 people, many from the Sheetz store chain, held signs calling for a "Beer Revolution" in Pennsylvania, with others reading "I Drink and I Vote," "Free My Beer" and "Get Your Hands Off My 6 Pack."'

Sheetz is involved in this proposed beer legislation in a very heavy-handed way. And this multi-state chain is involved because they see a lot of dollar bills in their future, not because they truly believe in the freedom of beer sales.

When Sheetz is the business writing the bill, the beer distributors are going to be hurt. According to the Post-Gazette:
Currently, most beer is sold by state-licensed beer distributors, and only by the case or keg; under the new bill, they also would be able to sell one or two six-packs.

And this "revolutionary" new law doesn't actually fundamentally change our antiquated system of limited beer licenses, it merely changes which business entities can buy which licenses.

Pennsylvania, it's time for a real beer revolution by the people and for the people - not a Sheetz gas station revolution. If Sheetz can be the motivator that's great, but let's have our state legislators actually tackle this issue in a fair and balanced way.

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