NC Governor Orders Liquor To-Go

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Glass of whiskey and car keys on wooden table.

With Christmas coming up, North Carolina along with many states are tightening the rules on how free Americans can celebrate with their families. Governor Roy Cooper (D) signed the first COVID-19 related executive order on May 5th, 2020 asking all North Carolina residents to stay in their homes for all but essential travel. Along with NC DHHS officials, the governor rolled out a three-phased program to return to normal as the pandemic continues. North Carolina is in phase three of the plan, but the governor had made minor modifications to the restrictions throughout the year. Residents are now under a 10:00 PM to 5:00 AM “Stay at Home” order.

On December 21, Governor Cooper signed an executive order allowing restaurants and bars to sell drinks to customers either to-go or via delivery.

Open alcoholic beverages in vehicles are prohibited by North Carolina State law. I would be surprised if people who bought a to-go cocktail kept it closed on the way to the car. I don’t believe any customers will make it all the way to where they are driving before they before they at least give it a taste. And if they’ve already had a taste, well, what’s another, right?

Cooper’s COVID-19 related executive orders have been nanny-state type protections for citizens. The problem with this type of prescription for the actions of citizens is that, mostly, people listen. If the government says you can buy a cocktail and bring it directly to the car, people will probably be obliged.

Governor Cooper says to his fellow North Carolinians that his order helps restaurants and bars. If he really wanted to help, he would allow restaurants and bars to stay open for normal business hours, and let people decide for themselves whether they feel it’s safe to go and have a drink, and when they should partake. For the record – COVID-19 is transmissible at all hours of the day.

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