So Vote Against The Bill

James Salzer has a piece up about opposition to the Sunday Sales law in rural Georgia.

Metro Atlantans who don’t understand why the Legislature seems reluctant to approve Sunday alcohol sales need only drive 240 miles southeast to this flatland of red-brick storefronts and quiet streets.

Polls show overwhelming support in metro Atlanta for a bill that would let voters decide whether stores can sell beer, wine and spirits on Sundays.

But in places like Blackshear, a southeast Georgia town bookended by mammoth Baptist churches, many people consider Sunday alcohol sales anathema to their way of life. In interviews last week, some locals said they weren’t even sure beer, wine and spirits should be sold the other six days of the week.

Legislators in rural areas are hearing lots of feedback against the law. Well then, I certainly hope they’ll vote against it. And if it does come to pass, they can join their constituents in voting against it at the polls. No one says Blackshear has to go wet on Sunday.


  1. bowersville says:

    “Consequently, Georgians who have that opportunity are now crossing state lines–Columbus, Augusta, Rome, Atlanta, Savannah, and other areas near state lines are seeing residents cross state lines…Business is booming in Florida, Alabama and South Carolina…

    It’s not a surprise. The state cut off a business that had a demand and forced residents to go either out of state or to even riskier enterprises ( no data was/is available….) Free market is an amazing thing.” Erick, 3-19-07, pay day lending.

    It’s too bad that logic has left this arena.

  2. CobbGOPer says:

    I thought the freaking bill provided for that contingency: Local control. Legalize Sunday sales statewide and make it the responsibility of the county or municipal government to place any local sales restrictions (like prohibiting such sales on Sunday) as desired by the local community…

    Rugby is right: Common sense is not very common, especially in Blackshear.

  3. CHelf says:

    Read the Kay Godwin quote at the bottom. I think that sums it up on the mindset against the vote. I would say something but know it might get me excommunicated from my church of a certain denomination.

  4. Demonbeck says:

    If Kay Godwin represented the majority of the Blackshear area, she’d be a state representative right now.

    Take her comments with that in mind.

  5. Icarus says:

    Is anyone else curious as to the AJC’s placement of this story? They seemed to be the ones stoking the fire for the Sunday Sales bill, knowing it would divide suburban vs. rural Republicans. Then, just when the pressure is about at its max, they run this story that seems to let those wanting to vote against the bill off the hook.

  6. jsm says:

    The Godwin family name is pretty influential around Blackshear and Waycross, so the fact that Kay didn’t get elected doesn’t mean her words don’t carry weight in those parts. I don’t agree with her or those who oppose the bill, but having family from the Godwin line, I understand where they’re coming from. They’ve grown up with blue laws, and they really do believe that they protect something sacred.

    Instead of making fun of them and denying their common sense, someone needs to get the message out to these folks that they can control their own communities with a vote and that government is not responsible for keeping Sunday holy.

  7. rugby_fan says:

    jsm; the problem with that strategy is that many of these people don’t seem content with controlling just their communities.

    It is about a way of life in Georgia that the state protects the most sacred of days.

  8. Demonbeck says:

    Yes, but to have a reporter from the Almighty AJC report to the world that all of rural Georgia opposes Sunday sales because of what Kay says is ridiculous.

  9. Decaturguy says:

    Why don’t they take it a step further and just ban all commerce on Sundays like they used to? Big government knows best.

  10. CHelf says:

    jsm…good thought but the opponents of this measure including previously mentioned persons feel the need to use government power to enforce a morality on others. There are those who are against this and are good Southern Baptists that still would not condemn a vote. But there are those who feel the world is literally going to hell and they will use the government to drag it back to heaven.

  11. JasonW says:

    I’m from Rural Georgia, and I support the bill, so…there…lol. Kay doesn’t speak for all of Rural Georgia…Neither does Jim Beck. (Both of whom, I know)

  12. Burdell says:

    Let’s make sure we have the proposed law straight here. It does not “legalize Sunday Alcohol Sales statewide.” It merely allows each community, *if they want to,* to pass a law allowing Sunday Alcohol Sales.

    So, in reality, a community that is against Sunday Sales doesn’t have to do anything at all.

    This bill would not legalize Sunday Sales everywhere and then make communities pass laws to be dry. It does just the opposite.

    Additionally, a dry county or city would not be able to legalize Sunday Sales if they don’t allow it the other days of the week. So it would be an even bigger hurdle to get Sunday Sales allowed in communities that are especially opposed to alcohol.

    Which is why I am dumbfounded as to why there is any opposition to this bill.

  13. jsm says:

    “Which is why I am dumbfounded as to why there is any opposition to this bill.”

    It’s the same reason any common sense idea gets rejected–uninformed people.

  14. rugby_fan says:

    You know, a thought just crossed my mind. Does anyone else see the potential for a Roy Barnes-esque backlash against any legislators who vote for this?

    I think that is what will happen, hence the refusal to deal with this issue.

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