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Alcohol debate kicks into high gear

The alcohol debate in Hartselle has kicked into high gear.

Since the petition was turned in nearly a week ago, that has been one of the most talked about issues in our community. If you want proof, then you have no further to look than our online poll.

We asked, “Would you vote for Hartselle to legalize alcohol sales?” You, our readers, showed up to vote more than 1,400 times. That’s probably the biggest number of voters

I must say that our online poll is not scientific by any standards. Voters can vote multiple times because they can vote on their computers (work and home), smart phones and e-reader tablets.

However, if readers are going to this extent to try to sway the vote one way or the other, it definitely shows how much interest there is in this issue and how passionate the supporters are on each side.

Personally, I haven’t made up my mind on how I will vote in this referendum. There are pros and cons to both sides. Obviously there are issues on a number of fronts – ethically, emotionally, economically, socially, spiritually, etc.

Those are issues that I will weigh heavily over the next five months.

As we go through this process, I hope that all of you will evaluate your positions on the issue and make the decision that is best.

As with any issue, I don’t feel that it is completely black or white. You could argue that alcohol is already in Hartselle because people purchase alcohol outside the city and bring it back home. Of course, you could argue that it’s better to stay dry because you are keeping it from being sold in your community.

You could say that we can’t grow without legalizing alcohol sales, but someone else could say that we’ve been able to attract new restaurants without alcohol.

Whatever your position is, I hope that we can debate this issue without it splitting our community in half.

Brent Maze is the managing editor of the Hartselle Enquirer.