Wednesday, January 3, 2007

Turning Back the Clock

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A few weeks ago, I wrote about my county voting to rescind the county's Sunday Blue Laws, which prohibited stores from opening before 1:30 in the afternoon and prohibited the sale of alcohol at any time on Sunday.

Yesterday, after the newly elected County Council was sworn in, their first order of business to was to reinstate the Blue Laws.

"It is a great concern with the majority of my constituents that are Christians or have a Christian background,"
a council member said. "We believe in a day of rest and a day of praise for the Lord, so that was important for us."

Well, I'm all for a day of rest, but it should not be based on religion. Blue laws are a violation of the separation of church and state. It's not the government's role to promote or facilitate church attendance. By having blue laws on Sunday, the government is favoring one religion, Christianity, over all others. If blue laws were applied fairly, then why not Saturday closings to promote and facilitate synagogue attendance for Jews, and so on?

Those who wish to attend church, will find a time to go, blue laws or not. Most churches have multiple worship service times in addition to the ones on Sunday morning. At any rate, it's a private matter that shouldn't be the government's concern.

If people want to shop on Sunday mornings and/or buy alcohol on that day, it's their own private business. Stores should be able to decide their own hours and be able to sell anything in their inventory seven days a week. All the surrounding counties have abolished their blue laws, so the main effect of reinstating ours will simply mean that revenue will go to these counties instead of our own.


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