As I made my paper route yesterday morning (Wednesday) most of the conversations were about the beer referendum. Several of the discussions expressed concerns for the many citations that have been given in the county for illegal possession of the substance, with fines ranging from $180, up. One story went that beer had been purchased in a wet county and it was being transported to a wet county, with no planned stop in our county. Unfortunately as they crossed Yalobusha County they were in a random driver’s license stop and were fined. I don’t fault the officer for this, they were breaking the law and anyone caught could fabricate this story. Another story was that after a long day of Christmas shopping, when entering the city as they returned home, were stopped for a routine driver’s license check. With no reason for suspecting illegal beer, were asked if they would allow a search of their vehicle. The officer was told that it would not be allowed without a search warrant. Then they turned to me and asked, “What would you have said?” I thought on this a few seconds and realized my answer would have been exactly the same, even though you could search my vehicle, my house, my business and not find even a whiff, but I still would not want a search of my vehicle—it’s unlawful. Officer was at fault here.
Most of these folks know I have a heavy foot and were teasing me about slowing down. Their caution came from assuming that law enforcement now would crack down on speeding motorist to make up for the loss of revenue from fines for illegal beer. We know that our law officers are fair and they were just ribbing me. If I’m given a speeding ticket I know I’ll have deserved it. I confess—I almost ran a red light this morning and I wasn’t speeding. Don’t know what happened, because I’m usually very careful at lights and four-way stops. I scared myself—was glad no one was behind me, ‘cause that van has great brakes.
When I delivered at Sprint Mart I found a huge area of the store completely cleared. I wondered what they were doing but didn’t ask. Found out when I completed my deliveries—beer trucks were unloading. Now they were back on Thursday and I’ve just come by this morning (Friday) and the same trucks are back. Well folks, if stores need restocking every day, our problem is not the legalization of beer in this county—it’s the consumption.
I’ve preached all along that we could not keep folks from drinking beer by simply keeping it illegal (although I was against its legalization) we have to change what citizens want to drink. I suggest good ole ice tea (sweet or straight) Diet Coke (or any other soft drink of your choice), all juices, Kool Aid, or the best of all—a cold glass of water (and Water Valley has delicious water). If you still want to consume beer or any other alcoholic beverage, use Biblical guidelines—moderation.
One of the best quotes I’ve heard from the stocking of beer was on Thursday morning, as I stopped by Sprint Mart for a Coke and sausage and biscuit. The parking lot was full and I wondered if all those folks were buying beer so early in the day. Not so, they were all busy looking for their usual morning fare. One fellow says, “Don’t you have Root Beer anymore?” I was with him, since I had to look several cases to the back to find my Diet Coke.
We’re enjoying so many delicious goodies—won’t try to mention all the names of our gifters for fear of omitting someone. Rest assured though, that your thoughtfulness is appreciated and the delicious treats have come in handy, since it’s often difficult to stop for food during our long holiday schedules.
Here’s wishing everyone a very Happy New Year. My prayer for all of you is that it will bring health, happiness, and peace.