Should AMC Forum 30 Theater Sell Beer?


True confession time: I was once a college student, and I flouted the 21-year old drinking age minimum.  During the first three and a half years of my college career, I consumed alcohol illegally with some regularity.  I learned a bunch of hard lessons about binge drinking, and as I grew older and matured, the amount and frequency with which I drank alcohol gradually tapered off.  Today my alcohol consumption, although not infrequent, is very moderate, measured, and careful.

Another confession: I have a teenaged chld who is not yet at the age I was when I became interested in drinking, but it’s only a few years away.  My instinct as a parent is to attempt to prevent my kid from having the same experiences I did with alcohol, but to be realistic and understand what will probably happen without condoning it.  We are experienced enough as parents to realize that at some point you have to cross your fingers and hope the example you set (in this case, of moderate, responsible alcohol consumption) will be the one your child follows.  I have every reason to believe this will be the case.

The foregoing is intended to set your expectations with regards to what my viewpoint is on the subject of allowing the AMC Forum 30 Theater at Mound Road and M-59 to sell alcoholic beverages to moviegoers.

It is my belief that the laws of the State of Michigan regarding alcohol consumption and “minors” are needlessly restrictive and criminalize behavior that in a right-thinking world would be legal.

In my opinion, if you are old enough to vote, or serve your country in the military, you ought to be given the right to legally consume alcohol.

The only reason why this is not currently legal is because of the efforts of groups such as Mothers Against Drunk Driving, who can also claim responsibility for the more recent change in the drunk driving laws criminalizing driving with a blood alcohol content of .08, which incidentally is a ridiculously low level.

In my opinion, the laws regarding the consumption of alcohol in the State of Michigan are too conservative, too restrictive, and needlessly limit the freedoms of people who by all rights should be accorded equal standing in society with their elders.  I guess this is one of the places where I differ with ‘conservatives’ of the typical variety and hew more to my small-L libertarian sentiments.

I see no problem with AMC Theater selling adult customers a beer or two for consumption during a movie.  The proposed price of a movie-goer’s beer would make a professional sports stadium owner blush and make the operators of the DTE Music Theater jealous.  Effectively, teenagers will be priced out of the market for an illegally-obtained beer in the theater.

Let me be clear: it is absolutely ridiculous to be concerned that a teenager would attempt to get someone older to purchase an eight dollar beer for him. Although I understand where some of my friends in town are concerned about this, my view is it isn’t gonna happen much, if at all.

In fact, I’m quite sure that every teenager who desires to consume alcohol at AMC Theater is already doing so.  It is fantastically easy to bring alcohol into a movie theater.  A child could do it.  With a little preparation and some determination, I’m certain a small group of adults could smuggle not only a case of beer but also a complete Thanksgiving turkey dinner into that place.  The security there is not designed to prevent people from doing stuff like that, nor should it be.

So cutting AMC off from profiting from the legal consumption of alcohol in their theater is not only an ineffective hedge against underaged alcohol consumption, it is grossly unfair.

I hope the City Council sees it that way two weeks from now.

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Posted on May 3, 2012, in Issues and views. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. When it comes to issues regarding rights and responsibility, freedom and liberty, Michigan almost always sides with big government and the nanny state. I agree movie theaters should be able to sell beer and drinks to adults, the drinking age should be 18 or 19, the legal limit of .08 is too low, and incidently, you should still be able to smoke in a bar. This is adults were talking about. When did it become so popular for the government to rule and regulate tax paying adults like they are children of the state?

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