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Effingham's innocence lost before liquor vote
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Dear Editor:

Regarding Tracie Way’s Feb. 10 letter about the liquor referendum:

Are we to believe that everyone in Effingham County is a teetotaler who will suddenly take up drinking when a full-service restaurant opens? The reality is that people here have been drinking for decades. It’s no coincidence that a liquor store is within yards of the county line. People are more likely to get drunk after purchasing a bottle at a liquor store than by paying upwards of $6.50 apiece for watered-down drinks at a restaurant. And fools are going to drive drunk, regardless of where they drink. Just count the number of DUIs in the weekly police reports.

Unfortunately, Effingham “innocence” was lost about 20 years ago. Meth labs abound; people are murdered; child abuse is horribly evident; spousal abuse is increasing; fatal car crashes are not uncommon. There is little innocence left to lose from the sale of a pina colada.

And its quaintness is long gone, too. I love Effingham County, but sadly previous county and city leaders have already done much more damage than liquor licenses will ever do. Rincon’s character in particular has been almost totally obliterated by their lack of foresight. Unplanned and unchecked growth, no provisions for the escalating vehicular traffic, allowing clear cutting of huge land tracts, no ordinances protecting our beautiful trees, garish and glaring signs being erected along the roadsides, gas stations and auto parts stores going up on every other corner; the dollar-signs-in-the-eyes, slash and burn drive towards supposed progress-not liquor-is already turning Effingham County into “Little Chatham.”

Will current local governments reverse this regrettable trend before it’s too late?

Dennis Curtis