Saturday, August 21, 2010

Wet/Dry Issue Heats Up

It has been a long, hot summer in more ways than one. The two factions in the Wet/Dry issue have been battling it out, with the "Drys" trying to keep the issue off the November ballot, and the "Wets" trying to get enough signatures on the petition so the people can vote on it. Both sides have been stirring up the dust, but the Wets" have finally won out, and the people will be able to vote for or against the county going wet.

The "Drys" have really been pulling out all the stops, including less than honorable tactics, such as intimidation, and yesterday I received a phone call from one of them. I must say, I was happy to hear from him because I have been just itching to air my humble opinion on the subject to someone other than the people who agree with me.

Dry: Is this Betty?

Me: Yes, it is.

Dry: This is Howdry Iam from the Committee for a Dry and Backward Boone County.

Me: Mmmhmm.

Dry: I saw your name on the petition to put the wet/dry issue on the ballot, and just wanted to be sure you knew what you were doing when you signed it.

Me. I'm pretty sure I did.

Dry: A lot of geezers, such as yourself, have gotten all confused when the petition was thrust at them, and thought they were signing to keep the issue off the ballot. So, I just wanted to make sure you weren't that senile, yet.

Me: I want to see the issue on the ballot in November. Is that clear enough?

Dry: Well, you know, if the county goes wet there will be likker stores on every corner and homeless people sleeping on the sidewalks and on our beautiful little courthouse square. Pedestrians will be picked off willy-nilly by drunk drivers trying to find their ways home from all of the saloons that will spring up overnight after the election.

Me: Oh, calm down. Our homeless people know they are supposed to sleep under the bridge, and there are plenty of drunk drivers coming back from the four surrounding counties that have already gone wet, and I haven't noticed an uptick in dead pedestrians.

Dry: It won't be safe for widow-women to walk the streets after dark.

Me: Are you suggesting that widows are street walkers? That sounds kind of kinky to me.

Dry: I can see that you won't listen to reason, so I'll just go on to the next person on the list.

Me: Wait! I want to say something else.

Dry: (Sigh) Okay, but make it quick.

Me: I don't appreciate the tactics that have been used by the "Drys" and I think that with an issue this controversial, everyone ought to have the right to vote on it, so maybe a little progress can be made.

Dry: Going wet won't be progress.

Me: Well, it couldn't hurt. This town hasn't moved forward in the forty years I have lived here, and it's because of people like you. You will stop at nothing to keep this county the backward place it is, and I'm tired of it. Thanks to that stupid law pushed through our legislature by Lu Hardin years ago, the people of Arkansas aren't allowed to vote on this particular issue until they have an almost impossible number of names on the petitions, more names than it takes for any other issue. Then, if the "Wets" lose the election, they aren't allowed to petition again for 16 years. The only good thing about that is after 16 years, most of the "Drys" will be nothing but dry bones and won't care any more. Then, maybe we can progress like our surrounding counties. So there.

Dry: Click.

Me: Hmmm. I guess we were cut off.

Of course, I have taken several - all right, MANY liberties in relating this conversation, but I did get a call that got me so ticked off, I told him exactly what I thought. I wasn't my usual sweet, ladylike, understated, timid self, either. (Fans vigorously.) I don't mind telling you it felt go-o-o-o-d! So good, in fact, that I am going to contact several members of our legislature and urge them to amend that law so it is fair and reasonable. See if I don't.

Stay tuned.


Olga said...

You go! So much studpidity to challenge, so little time.

"I wasn't my usual sweet, ladylike, understated, timid self, either."

Just love it...doesn't it feel good to let loose once in a while?

Jay said...

I'm hoping for a couple of decent sports bars, a strip club, a package store withing in staggering .. uh ... walking distance and maybe street walkers on every corner.

Okay, I'll settle for being able to run get a bottle of wine for dinner.

The Idiot Speaketh said...

I spent years in a tiny North Texas town in between Wichita Falls and Amarillo. At the time, there was only 1 town in that 250 miles that allowed liquor sales. Now, every town is wet. Here where we live now, the town just went wet about 2 years ago. The dry people were freaking out and tried to scare people like what you are describing in the phone conv you had. The wets won, the town now has about 3 places that sell liquor, and so far, there has been no increase whatsoever in crime, drunk driving arrests, or anything. The only change is that the local school district now gets alot more money from the their share of the liquor taxes.

Arkansas Patti said...

I live in a dry county for the first time in 70 years and have no problem with it-mostly because I don't drink.
That said, I do believe it SHOULD be put to a vote. That is how we do things isn't it?
And that said---that was truly a funny,funny, slightly altered conversation and a delightful post.

NitWit1 said...

Marion County went wet a few years back and now several precindcts has decided to revert it back to dry which will affect one liquor store.

A percentage of the population of each precinct must sign petition. One precinct has only TWO inhapitants so they group is bragging about 100% of one precinct is for going dry.

I, a non-alchohol participant, except for rare glass of wine, have lived a number of places, states and countries in my life. When alcohol became an issue, whether the situtation was dry or wet, I did not see any improvement in morality which corollates with one of my favorite retorts: YOU CANNOT LEGISLATE MORALITY.

patsy said...

wet or dry i could care less but if you want wet then i am for it. i hope jay gets his street strollers.

kenju said...

You tell 'em Betty!!

Grayquill said...

You need to move to Seattle. You would be so happy here. They are considering privatizing the state run liquor stores. Oh you actually might be against that, the privatizing thing. But this you would love. The mayor of Seattle is considering changing the ordinance so bars can stay open all night – the idea is to stop all the accidents that happen at 2:00 in the morning when the bars close. I guess it’s better to spread out the burden on our police, firemen and hospitals, so they can help our all our drunk drivers. Are politicians are certainly considerate. And then there is something about legalizing marijuana or maybe that was last year. I just can’t keep up. Regardless I think you would really like it here – except for the wet rain, that you might not like so much.

Anonymous said...


Word Tosser said...

You should have told him... well, bless your little pea picking heart... lol...
I sign most petitions because.. it isn't so much of how I feel about the issue...but the fact I think the people should be able to decide if they want it or not... not the politicians.

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Anonymous said...

Yay! you speak for most of us.....and that's the point.

Kay Dennison said...

Damn, Betty, you are so good!!!! Didn't we learn anything from Prohibition?