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Consider This: Mississippi Alcohol Restructuring

Published: Mar. 10, 2022 at 6:21 PM CST
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JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - If you took a Civics class, you probably learned about the basic responsibilities of government.

When it comes to state government, a few items that quickly come to mind are to provide law enforcement and fire protection, accessible healthcare, roads, bridges, water and sewer infrastructure and public education.

There are other items on the list, but those are near the top.

Guess what doesn’t make the list? State government operating an alcohol warehouse.

If you want a case study on government ineptitude, just look at how Mississippi has managed its Alcohol Beverage Control (ABC) operations, especially over the past two years during COVID when alcohol consumption surged. On the contrary, if you look at beer distribution in Mississippi, it works great.

Guess why? Because state government is not bogging down the system. It’s privately operated.

When it comes to ABC operations, the entire system needs reform. The majority of Mississippian want to purchase wine in grocery stores, but state leaders continue to cave to the liquor store lobbyists instead of following the will of the people.

The state legislature is protecting liquor stores instead of letting the free market determine winners and losers, which is the way every other business must operate if they are going to survive and thrive.

Competition is good.

Instead of stifling competition, change the law so liquor stores can have as many locations as they want. Isn’t that the way capitalism is supposed to work?

State leadership keeps talking about making Mississippi a more appealing state.

Improving the ABC system and offering wine in grocery stores probably won’t put a big dent in making that happen. However, it is just another example of the hundreds of archaic laws on the books that create needless bureaucracy, prevent economic growth, and keep our state from moving into the 21st century.

Prohibition ended a long, long time ago. It’s time to purge the antiquated ABC laws and privatize the operation.

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