Tough choice for Dallas County

Published 12:04 am Friday, October 26, 2012

When it comes to the decision on whether or not alcohol should be sold on Sunday in Dallas County, Selma seems to be torn.

The pro-alcohol sales argument, from what I’ve heard, claims that alcohol sales will increase revenue for the city in the form of tax dollars. Also, it will provide residents the convenience of purchasing alcohol on Sunday, whether that is for drinking or cooking purposes.

However, the opposing side seems to say that Sunday is the Lord’s day, and that should be respected by taking one day out of the week to not allow alcohol purchases.

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When I first moved to Selma, I couldn’t miss the big billboard along U.S. Highway 80 reading “Vote Yes.” Then, driving through town, I encountered more billboards encouraging th same messgage.

I had never lived in a county that didn’t allow Sunday alcohol sales, so I found this concept to be somewhat strange.

And after speaking to several residents while covering stories in the community, I quickly learned that business and job stimulation in Selma is of utmost concerns right now.

City officials and locals alike seem to praise any new business or industry that moves to the area because it promotes monetary stimulation. While I’ve been here, I’ve already covered two food establishments that have planted their business here in Selma.

So, with these things in mind, I came to the conclusion that more tax money funneling in to the city via alcohol sales would, of course, be beneficial for the city.

But on the other hand, you have to consider the history of Selma and the region in which we live — the Bible Belt.

Churches are without a doubt part of the glue that holds this community together.

Just look over the city from the Edmund Pettus Bridge and you will see steeples lining the horizon. The majority of residents I speak with also seem to have a “church home” they attend every Sunday.

So, I have to ask myself, would allowing Sunday alcohol sales undermine this mentality that we live in the Bible Belt and respect the one day out of the week that’s supposed to be holy?

After considering both arguments, the issue for me boils down to the question of what is needed more.

Do we need tax money and the convenience of buying our favorite alcoholic beverage on Sunday? Or, do we need to stand by our history and our morals and remain a city that has reverence in our religious beliefs?

The question definitely isn’t an easy one to answer.