Buying booze on Sunday

August 11, 2008
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One organization in Indiana is looking to end one of our state’s last remaining “blue laws” – buying alcohol from a store on Sundays. As an adult of legal drinking age, I am all for changing this state law. I know Indiana is a conservative state with deep-seated religious values, but not everyone in the state is religiously or morally opposed to drinking on Sunday. And those who don’t want to drink on Sunday can continue not to if the law is amended to allow alcohol sales on Sunday.

Although lawmakers will say this isn’t a religious issue, in some ways it is. The reason for prohibiting Sunday alcohol sales started with other shops and retailers being closed Sunday because it was most people’s day of worship. My parents have mentioned how when they were growing up in the 1950s and ’60s, a lot of shops were closed Sunday. Now, almost every retailer is open Sunday, with one other notable holdover from the blue laws – car dealerships.

I’ve lived here for more than 20 years and know that I can’t buy alcohol on Sunday from a store. But what I’ve never understood is why I can get in my car, drive to my local tavern and drink? To me, that would increase the chances of drunk-driving accidents more so than selling beer or wine in a grocery store, which is an argument some have for keeping the Sunday restrictions.

I can recall several times during the past few years this issue coming up for proposal or debate for our General Assembly. Each time, supporters of changing the law hoped it was finally the year Indiana changes it and those in opposition bring up drinking and driving and religion. This year, Hoosiers for Beverage Choices has started a Web site residents a petition to sign showing legislators people want to be able to buy alcohol on Sunday.

But with all of the other major issues Hoosiers are facing right now – property taxes, the economy, education, higher prices on commodities, health care – will the General Assembly 1) have someone sponsor a bill to change the alcohol laws here, and 2) will the bill even get through our legislature?
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  • I am in complete support of the booze sales on any given day of the week. If you go to Chicago and want something to drink, you can go to the local store and get it. There may be a time restriction, but not a day restriction there (except the usual -Election Day, and a few others).

    Here is a smart idea... Lets go drink and drive!... it will be much better than getting booze at the store and driving home and drinking it (AT HOME)....

    Where is the intelligence in that?
  • I am totally for this law to change. Indiana is losing a lot of tax dollars to other states by not allowing alcohol sales on Sundays. If I forget to go get beer on Saturday for the next day, Illinois get that revenue from me. I\'ve been there twice in the past 6 weeks. That\'s a lot of Hoosier dollars going to another state to buy it.

    I\'ve read on some other sites that people not wanting this to change, and in fact have all stores closed on Sunday. They have said we should spend that Sunday with our family. Well, when I have to go out to Illinois, I\'m missing out on a least an hour round trip, instead of driving 15 minutes round trip to the liquor store or the grocery store. Not to mention the gas it costs me.

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  1. Frankly, it is tragic that you are even considering going to an expensive, unaccredited "law school." It is extremely difficult to get a job with a degree from a real school. If you are going to make the investment of time, money, and tears into law school, it should not be to a place that won't actually enable you to practice law when you graduate.

  2. As a lawyer who grew up in Fort Wayne (but went to a real law school), it is not that hard to find a mentor in the legal community without your school's assistance. One does not need to pay tens of thousands of dollars to go to an unaccredited legal diploma mill to get a mentor. Having a mentor means precisely nothing if you cannot get a job upon graduation, and considering that the legal job market is utterly terrible, these students from Indiana Tech are going to be adrift after graduation.

  3. 700,000 to 800,000 Americans are arrested for marijuana possession each year in the US. Do we need a new justice center if we decriminalize marijuana by having the City Council enact a $100 fine for marijuana possession and have the money go towards road repair?

  4. I am sorry to hear this.

  5. I tried a case in Judge Barker's court many years ago and I recall it vividly as a highlight of my career. I don't get in federal court very often but found myself back there again last Summer. We had both aged a bit but I must say she was just as I had remembered her. Authoritative, organized and yes, human ...with a good sense of humor. I also appreciated that even though we were dealing with difficult criminal cases, she treated my clients with dignity and understanding. My clients certainly respected her. Thanks for this nice article. Congratulations to Judge Barker for reaching another milestone in a remarkable career.

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