The Bladen County Board of Commissioners got a bit ahead of itself last week when it decided to vote on putting the on-premises sale of beer and wine on the November ballot.
Since the defeat of the county-wide sale of beer and wine referendum in the May primary, there have been factions plotting and planning any way possible to put it before the voters once again. But this time around, they are sipping defeat from a completely different source.
Apparently, none of the county’s commissioners knew of a state statute that prohibits another referendum on the sale of beer and wine within three years of the last such referendum — and we were all too happy to help dig that statute up and share it on the heels of last week’s fruitless attempt to waste voters’ time with another referendum.
While we can point a finger at each of the five county commissioners who vote to put another beer and wine referendum on the ballot — especially Wayne Edge and Mike Cogdell, who made the motions to do it — we have a much bigger problem with Daniel Dowless, who not only voted for the referendum, but did so despite his district overwhelmingly voting against it in May.
It seems to us that elected officials ought to represent the majority of their constituents, and not their own personal agendas. And if voters know and understand what’s been done, Dowless could be in trouble the next time his name is on the ballot — and rightly so.
But for now, we are happy the issue won’t come back before the county’s voters until at least 2017 — and we feel certain that Bruce Cannon, members of the Bladen Baptist Association, area churches and their numerous supporters are just as pleased. They organized and waged a solid, factual war against the county-wide sale of beer and wine leading up to the May primary, even as their opponents attempted to shove fallacies and pipe dreams down voters’ throats.
We hope this puts to rest any further discussion or attempts to force this county to give up its moral backbone any more than it already has over the years. It’s time the adults in Bladen County, and beyond, start showing our youth by example that alcohol is not the catalyst for fun; and instead teach that, even in small amounts, can lead to devastating consequences.
Alcohol is already accessible enough throughout the Mother County. How about focusing on some things that WOULD benefit residents of all ages — like, for instance, a movie theater or bowling alley or pool.