Only in Ontario would people get excited about driving out of the way to purchase warm beer, while inconvenienced.
Earlier this week the province debuted beer sales in grocery stores to much fanfare - what a joke.
The Ontario government introducing six-pack and individual beer sales at select grocery stores is a laudable & laughable half measure which should be challenged so as to bring about actual meaningful change and reform to alcohol sales.
The Superstore: Now featuring Beer
From Windsor to London there is ONE grocery store selling beer, on two end aisle displays, non-refrigerated, and much to the convenience of no-one, you’re forced to purchase the beer immediately as there is a cash register obtrusively in the middle of the aisle.
In what crazy universe is this to be considered progressive or even useful?
Ontario, the nanny of the nanny states, a province with a history rich in a puritan attitudes which are still prevalent today.
This is a province which from 1927-1962 required people who wanted to purchase alcohol to acquire and possess a permit. It wasn’t until 1969 that customers were allowed to handle their own alcohol in the store, rather than requiring a clerk to retrieve alcohol from a backroom.
It’s also a province which has allowed for a private monopoly to develop, currently owned by foreign conglomerates, which has exerted impressive political maneuvering, ensuring the government today, those past, and most likely those of the future, will support and strengthen their economic position.
Beer sales in grocery stores aren’t impressive or anything to champion; they’re a half step and it’s laughable to see Ontarians, the media and government alike acting like impressed school children gazing upon a window display of Christmas toys for the first time.
There are many other jurisdictions in Canada and around the globe where purchasing alcohol is more liberal and what’s been introduced in Ontario shouldn’t be viewed as progressive. It should be commended, though barely, and challenged, so as to bring about real and meaningful change.
While it’s a small step forward, perhaps even in the right direction, it’s a barely a half measure.
With changes of attitudes can come changes of culture, and perhaps warm beer sales in a limited number of grocery stores is just what we need.
Or maybe, we all just need a cold beer.