When Gay Marriage and Alcohol Politics Collide
I’m sure every wine lover has been waiting, breath held deep, for the moment when the volatile issues of Gay Marriage and Alcohol would be linked. Well, wait no longer.
In Georgia, where Governor Perdue was happy to abide by a referendum of the people on the issue of Gay Marriage (it was voted down), is a bit less inclined to follow the will of the people when it comes to Sunday Alcohol Sales:
“When you ask people
generally if they want the right to vote on anything — what kind of toilet
tissue the state ought to use, or anything like that — they’ll typically say
yes…You have to always be
attuned to where public opinion is, but it doesn’t necessarily mean you have to
follow that. A good leader always leads in a way they think is the right
direction for Georgia on significant issues,” he said on the radio show….Think of it this way,
it really helps you plan ahead for the rest of your life — buying (alcohol) on Saturday,
rather than Sunday. Time management.”
As it turns out, 66% of Georgians voted to repeal a law that prohibited Sunday beer and wine sales. The legislature is set to codify that statement with new legislation allowing such sales. As you can see, the Governor who happily clung to the will of Georgians on Gay Marriage isn’t quite able to do the same with wine sales.
Jamie Ensley, President of the Log Cabin Republicans, though surely a tad bitter over previous political results in Georgia, does hit it on the head with this comment:
“Gov. Perdue said on gay
marriage, ‘I think we need be very respectful of the people’s voice and listen
to that.’ What Gov. Perdue is telling us is that repealing Georgia’s Blue Laws
is the will of the people, but it conflicts with his personal views, so he’s
going to veto it, and as an added bonus, he’ll make his right wing conservative
voting base happy”
The politics of Alcohol in America are complicated enough without bringing gay marriage to the mix. But the point here is well made by Ensley and, of course, by the Governor’s actions. While Gay Marriage tends to be a Red State/Blue State issue, alcohol issues don’t always break down that way. In this case, the Governors conservative views dictate his hypocrisy. But being pro alcohol sales does not necessarily equate to being a liberal or conservative.
When it comes to issue of shipping wine to consumers a number of Republicans and conservatives have lined up on the side of free and fair and non-discriminatory markets. In other places Democrats have heeded the call for fairness. Often times the political lines are blurred. More often than not, it’s about money…where it flows from and to whom it flows that dictates political positions.
But in this case, it’s just a matter of hypocrisy.