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N.C. Opinions: Winston-Salem

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Cups raised for a bill that pairs beer and ballgames

From an editorial Thursday in the Winston-Salem Journal:

Responsible adults should be able to enjoy a cup of suds while watching a live ball-game, even at small stadiums. So cheers to a bill that would allow seated fans to do that more conveniently.

Current law allows for in-stand sales only at venues of at least 60,000 seats. But the state House recently approved a bill that permits alcohol sales in the seating areas of professional ballparks with a capacity of at least 3,000 people, The Associated Press reported. That’s what we call democracy with a lower-case “d.”

Supporters of the bill rightly contend that it’s more convenient for patrons, and we suspect many patrons would be glad to see the change. Republican and Democratic opponents say it encourages greater consumption.

But we’d argue that most adults are responsible enough to realize that, if they’re going to have more than two beers with their hot dogs and popcorn, they’d better have a designated driver or call a cab.

Our drunk-driving laws, while they can always stand some tightening, are pretty tough.

And for some folks, the cost of beer at stadiums, even smaller ones, is enough to curtail consumption.

Finally, it’s just plain unfair to allow in-stand sales at the big venues but not at the smaller ones.

The bill is now in the Senate. We suspect there may be just a few senators who enjoy a brew with a ballgame. So we raise our glass in an advance cheer, hoping this bill will pass in that chamber as well. This is one measure that many members of the public will support.

After all, it’s not like the legislature is trying to pass a contentious resolution saying which of the state’s many fine microbrews is the best.

N.C. Opinions offers perspectives from across the state. The views expressed are not necessarily those of the Observer’s editorial board.
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