A police officer spoke a lot of sense on Radio 4 on Friday regarding binge drinking. While he generally welcomed the latest publicity stunt pulled by Tesco, (who now suggest selling booze at a loss is a bad idea), he went on to expound on the real damage done by ruthless and irresponsible supermarkets selling booze. (See Independent Here)
He was particularly lucid on the effect cheap supermarket booze has had on the structure of our communities. He explained how the supermarkets have destroyed working mens clubs and community pubs by selling their drink so cheap. Years ago the young used to learn to drink (and get drunk sometimes) within the confines of their community and elders. Now it is within the confines of the local park or cemetery and without any adult presence.
There needs to be a break put on the irresponsible use of alcohol. One way of doing this would be to encourage responsible drinking within working mens clubs and community pubs. Regrettably these are the very establishments that are currently closing at an alarming rate.
The government (or at least previous governments) spend our money on just about every hair brained and politically correct “community” project they can find. Perhaps it is now time to support traditional community drinking establishments. Maybe the government could even squeeze the likes of Tesco for the money.