For more than a decade CVS has been under public pressure to stop selling tobacco products. Today this became a reality. This is a win for the corporation, as they will no longer be selling cancer to its customers. Kudos CVS! I am in agreement with the rest of America that this is a moral and responsible thing to do. BUT…
Here in Indiana we have those pesky outdated blue laws that say you cannot purchase alcohol on Sunday. What does one have to do with the other? Allow me to explain.
The sale of alcohol at liquor stores is higher in Indiana than in most states. If you drive a few minutes in my town in any direction you are sure to pass one. We outnumber most states in the number of liquor stores per capita. They are a thriving business because grocers, gas stations, etc. cannot sell cold alcohol or alcohol on Sundays. If you drink alcohol you are likely to spend at least a few minutes during the busiest shopping days of the week at a liquor store.
Currently I can think of 3 CVS pharmacies that are within 5 minutes of my house that are a very close proximity to liquor stores. With CVS no longer selling tobacco products, Liquor stores will reap the benefit here in my town and perhaps much of Indiana. How many can there be? Will I might be in a small city, but my neighbor city of Indianapolis has 52 CVS stores and at least twice that many liquor stores
Our blue laws will not change, because of the large political support from liquor store corporations. A change in blue laws would be devastating to the liquor store economy. Instead, this economy of liquor will continue to thrive and potentially reap millions more in profits. Thus increasing their political capital in the state of Indiana.
What do I have against liquor stores? My complaint is with the numbers of them in run down neighborhoods. They are there like the check cashing places, rent a centers, and pawn shops, to help contribute to the decay of society. They are a symptom of poverty. There sole purpose is to target the money of the economically vulnerable in our community.
Now is the time to lobby for the change of blue laws, as liquor stores will have cancer-causing revenue to subsidize their losses in alcohol sales. It could still be changed with enough public support. If enough people are educated on how a change in this law can better our communities, we could make this happen. If it doesn’t happen now, it never will.