Seems like the Old Bill are at it again. Not long ago Tandleman was highlighting the nutters in blue and their attempts to force us to drink out of plastic glasses. And more recently there was a conveniently favourable poll for lowering the drink drive limit. Now we have this story www.lep.co.uk/news/39Smoking-ban-fuels-domestic-violence39.4000024.jp reported in all the press.
My first thought was what a load of rubbish. Well, actually it was where’s the question mark, but you get the point. The police are (quite rightly, perhaps) always telling people to keep their noses out of police matters, and yet they feel compelled to constantly talk bollocks about the licensed trade. Presumably because they arrest a lot of drunks, they feel qualified to do so. I think a comparable example is the armchair football fan who is always, somehow, a world authority on tactics. Well, they do watch a lot of football.
There are many, many, things wrong with this article, but lets just take it at face value, for now. Firstly, there is not one piece of research that equates the smoking ban with long term loss of trade. That the licensed trade is suffering is undeniable, but there are many factors at play here, as any educated drinker can tell you. To my mind, the most important is the entrenched government attitude. A lot of drinkers complain to me about the shocking discrepancy between on trade and off trade prices. There was a general shift towards home drinking before the smoking ban and Mr Darling’s policies won’t exactly change that, will they?
So what are we left with? Guys getting tanked up at home and beating up their partners. So alcohol is to blame. Hold on, what does someone who actually knows what they talking about say. Valerie Wise, Director of Preston Women’s Refuge says, “Domestic violence is a deliberate act and so can't be excused by having a drop too much to drink." Exactly. This reminds me of a case in Bury some years ago when a lad was charged with assault after smashing a pool cue over someone’s head. His mitigation? He’d had six pints of Holts Bitter. No, sorry, the guy was a dickhead beforehand. Drinking six pints won’t alter that fact.
These morons are wife-beaters. That is who they are. And it’s got sod all to do with the smoking ban.
Next week: how the smoking ban caused an increase in alien abductions...