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Comments about ‘In our opinion: Maintaining balance’

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Published: Thursday, March 6 2014 6:05 p.m. MST

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marxist
Salt Lake City, UT

"Alcohol consumption imposes significant costs upon society." But alcohol also delivers significant benefits. Alcohol itself is a relaxant. Moreover, wine, especially red wine, confers a number of significant health benefits. In fact advocates of the food pyramid recommend one drink per day for women and two drinks per day for men.

Of course moderation is the key. There are distinct benefits to keeping consumption under control, no question. The problem for us in Utah is that alcohol is matter of religious faith, and alcohol consumption itself must be demonized. That's what the so-called Zion Curtain is about in large part.

There are many statistics which show favorable outcomes from Utah's moderate alcohol use. But recent reports have it that Utah has the worst mental health in the nation. Could there be a connection between that and a possible too tight use of alcohol? Is alcohol better that Lexapro?

River Dog
Salt Lake City, UT

So true, so true. Yes we definitely need the Utah Legislature to guide us on what we should be and should not be exposed to. We, the general public, are unwise and need this special guidance. I also think the Utah Legislature should make laws that all food stores must put labels on all soda pop and other items that are high in sugar content. We the public are becoming obese at an alarming rate. And why doesn't the Legislature ban all tobacco products? We all know, yes, even us the simple public, know how harmful smoking is to the human body. While they are at it, shouldn't the Legislature pass laws limiting the amount of red meat people are allowed to eat and close all those despicable stores that sell, ugh, doughnuts! Yes, we need the Utah Legislature to help us become good and healthy. Thank God for the Utah Legislature!

GZE
SALT LAKE CITY, UT

This statement: alcohol consumption imposes significant costs upon society is false.

The "overconsumption" or the "irresponsible consumption" yes. Simple consumption: no.

cavetroll
SANDY, UT

"Results from the same study show only 32 percent of Utah residents said that they drank alcohol within the last month, almost half of Wisconsin's 63.1 percent."

The DNews and their owners contend that the laws in Utah are the only reason we don't have higher numbers of drinkers. They conveniently forget the fact that the major religious affiliation also affects these numbers. The LDS church still has yet to show how having the "Zion Curtain" has helped to lower and maintain the low numbers of drinkers. The "Zion Curtain" is simply an asinine attempt to "protect" people from being offended.

The "Zion Curtain" is just another way to force people to conform to LDS church teachings, whether they are LDS or not. It's ridiculous. Get rid of it.

Noodlekaboodle
Poplar Grove, UT

So how does the "zion curtain" stop people from drinking? An partition that hides the people that make the drinks is not what makes a restraunt a restraunt. I mean, do you really confused Applebee's or Chillies with a place like Bar-X? Of course not, one just serves booze, and the other has a bar in one part. There isn't any proof for it, and let's be honest, the reason Utah has less alchol related problems is because half the state doesn't drink, and that's because their LDS, not because kids can't see you pouring drinks when they go to TGI Fridays.

ODannyBoy
Sandy, Utah

I really don't think the Zion Curtain goes far enough! I mean once they tap that beer or mix that drink safely hidden behind the curtain, the waiter delivers that same beer or drink to the patrons RIGHT IN FRONT OF EVERYONE. I would propose we develop little Zion Beer Cozies to cover them up as they pass through the restaurants in front of the vulnerable and the impressionable. We could even call them "hood winks". That'll cut down on people being swayed.

Shaun
Sandy, UT

The Zion curtain serves no purpose. If it did then the state would require all restaurants to have it including the ones that were grandfathered in when the law took place.

The only law the state has that really shows a restaurant is a restaurant is the law that requires food to be ordered with a drink.

Ranch
Here, UT

If people don't want to expose their children to alcohol consumption, they should leave them home when they go to restaurants (as a special favor to other restaurant patrons!).

Esquire
Springville, UT

I don't drink. But Utah's liquor laws are absurd. I don't believe they provide an incentive to drink less. The opposite may be the case - look at the lines at the liquor stores where people are buying big bottles of the stuff (as opposed to someone having one or two drinks at a bar or restaurant). If Utah has a lower incidence of alcohol issues it's because of the predominance of Mormons, not because of the laws controlling it.

Hutterite
American Fork, UT

Utah's laws have little to do with how many people do or don't drink here, and everybody knows it. It's disingenuous to claim otherwise.

Mister J
Salt Lake City, UT

Every time I see or hear the phrase Zion Curtain, The end of the Wizard of Oz comes to mind.

LDS Liberal
Farmington, UT

You could change the Utah laws to "Open bar 24/7" and it wouldn't change a thing.

There is a simple explanation for this:
The dominate religion in this Sate (50%) isn't drinking regardless of what the law says.

This is perfect example of the Tail wagging the [State Legislature] Dog.

mcdugall
Murray, UT

As a resident of Utah, I find the conclusion of this editorial offensive and wrong. The "Zion Wall" does nothing to deter anyone from consuming alcohol, nor does obscuring the creation of drinks have any impact on an individuals choice of drinking. The real reason Utah has such low alcohol abuse and DUI rates, is because of the citizens of Utah are making the right choices. These choices can include abstaining from the consumption of alcohol due to religious or health beliefs or if people choose to consume alcohol they do so in the most responsible way possible. This newspaper should congratulate the majority of Utahan's for making responsible decisions.

nonceleb
Salt Lake City, UT

Time and time again our myriad of complex liquor laws are being credited with our lower consumption in Utah. When will we acknowledge that the real reason is the high percentage of non-drinking Mormons in this state. Most of our liquor laws are just plain silly. And the reason given from legislators for hiding the mixing of drinks was to keep it out of the view of younger patrons. I do not know any of them who made a far-fetched claim that it would turn a restaurant into more of a bar.

airnaut
Everett, 00

nonceleb
Salt Lake City, UT

Ya,
I have yet to hear ONE person ever tell me they started "drinking" when they saw someone working the bar.

Most of the kids I know started "dinking" because - like 2 year olds - teeneagers naturally explore their boundries,
Mommy and Daddy told them not to,
friends Double-Dog-Dared them to,
or
all of the above.

Utahns tend to drink harder when they do drink,
because it is cheaper to buy an entire bottle, than a single drink,
and who wants to carry around a half empty bottle?

Utah's liquor laws are just plain stupid, and actually do more harm than good.

RFLASH
Salt Lake City, UT

It is strange that they make them set partitions to block the preparation of drinks. These things are based on Mormon point of view and sometimes it is strange! I grew up Mormon. Half the family were active Mormon and the other half were the drinkers and smokers. My mom made sure we went to church. I was always around people who drank bear and whiskey and smoked in our house. In church I was taught not to drink. I didn't drink and watching them pour whiskey in their coke didn't make me want to drink! If a kid is going to drink, putting up that stupid partition will do nothing to prevent it. as a matter of fact, the more you harp about it and do those things, the more curious the kids become! Weren't these people ever children?
I guess what bothers me is knowing just how much people get looked down at just because they want a glass of wine or a margarita with their food. Parents teach kids that people who drink are evil. It is strange.

Well.ok
Lehi, UT

The Utah legislature, where one can rail against the tyranny of government taking away our freedoms and liberty while at the same time creating a nanny-state in which restaurants are required to pay thousands of dollars to hide the offending alcohol from view. Let the free market decide! If a restaurant doesn't have the partition and you are offended, then support another establishment, or heaven forbid ask for a seat in another section of the restaurant.

I have not met one person in favor of this law. Just read the comments on this story in the LDS Church owned newspaper - every one of them is against this silly government overreach.

GaryO
Virginia Beach, VA

" . . . all reasonable people agree that alcohol consumption imposes significant costs upon society." Well, yes and no.

If you're talking excess, yes. Otherwise no.

Too much of anything imposes significant costs and society.

. . . Like to much oversimplifying in Deseret News op eds . . . especially if people are too trusting to think before accepting a claim as fact.

cjb
Bountiful, UT

Alcohol makes people violent, marijuana makes people docile. Perhaps if marijuana extract were put into the alcohol people drink, they would be more peaceful when they get drunk.

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