Sunday Fun-day: Five Great Reasons to Allow Liquor Stores to Sell Booze on the Sabbath
Local Texas state rep Senfronia Thompson has introduced a bill that would allow liquor stores to open on Sunday, something they have not been able to do in my lifetime thanks to "blue" laws that prevent certain businesses from operating on Sunday. In fact, I remember when virtually all stores were forced to close on Sundays to honor the Christian Sabbath.
This law would allow liquor stores to open from noon to 10 p.m. on Sundays and also allow them to remain open later on other days of the week. Obviously, this would be up to the businesses and the demand from consumers, but I'm guessing there would be more than enough business to justify opening for most stores.
In truth, there are some really good reasons for liquor stores to be open on Sunday. Here are five of them.
Not all religions are alcohol-free.
These laws were originally enacted to keep stores closed on the Christian Sabbath of Sunday. First, in case you hadn't looked around lately, Houston is a damn diverse city with a myriad number of different religions represented. Second, I grew up in a German Lutheran family. They drank...a lot. Not all religions require abstinence from alcohol and some, because of the culture supporting the congregations, actively encourage it.
Sunday in the fall in Texas is only slightly less significant than Friday night in the fall in Texas and even that is dependent upon where you live. In Texas, football is a religion, which is why it seems so odd that the only day of the week nearly as important as Friday nights doesn't allow for the purchase of hard liquor. The inability to grab some of the hard stuff if you run out on Super Bowl Sunday should be a crime, not the other way around.
Spec's downtown is badass for more reasons than liquor.
I mean, seriously, have you been there? Even if you don't want vodka or whiskey on Sunday, a good enough reason to pass this law is so that Spec's downtown would be allowed to remain open so anyone could peruse their crazy good and even wildly exotic food offerings.
Bars and grocery stores are allowed to sell it.
This is the ultimate in unfair. You can buy beer and wine from the grocery store and bars can sell anything they want, but somehow liquor stores are disallowed? Maybe this is a throwback to a time when liquor stores were places mostly for hard-core alcoholics to buy booze in brown paper bags. Now they are places for everyday alcoholics...to buy booze in brown paper bags. My point is it's unfair to tell one kind of store it can't be open but allow others to do the very same thing.
It's good for business.
Texas has a fairly sizable liquor tax. Some have suggested opening stores on Sundays could increase that collection by millions every year. Certainly, for liquor stores that decided to open on Sundays, it could help increase their revenue. The argument has been made that people would just change their buying habits rather than buy more, but I didn't hear any malls complaining when they allowed them to open up on Sundays.