Prohibition ended in 1933. Of course, the spirit of the 21st Amendment didn’t stop Massachusetts from infringing on Bay Staters’ Happy Hour rights a half-century later. Sure, I wasn’t around in 1984, but I feel deeply for the generations of after-work imbibers forced by The Man to pay full price since Gov. Michael Dukakis put his little foot down.
Fast forward to 2023, and the Boston City Council is getting a little big for its britches.
Ricardo Arroyo, a Democrat who’s had a few problems himself (see the primary for district attorney last summer), proposed at a hearing Monday to ban the sale of alcohol in containers smaller than 100 milliliters, a product you probably refer to by its more colloquial name—“nips.”
The cities of Newton and Chelsea, as well as some towns on Cape Cod, have already okayed similar measures.
“The data is clear that in cities that have banned the sale of nips there is a significant and positive impact on public health,” Arroyo said in a press release. “We should put the wellbeing of our communities first by banning the sale of nips in Boston as well.”
In a time when the common college student is partaking in BORG (Black Out Rage Gallon) culture, you would think containers with well-portioned doses would be regarded a bit more favorably.
Arroyo claims the measure also seeks to address the city’s trash problem, as the bottles are not biodegradable.
Addressing the open transferal and consumption of heroin and other death cocktails on Melnea Cass Boulevard might be a better place to begin Boston’s public health journey. Instead, taking away an entire popular inventory category from Boston liquor stores is the statesman’s proposed solution.
The Boston Herald editorial staff made a great point. If litter is an issue, why doesn’t Boston offer the same cash—you read that correctly—incentives for the shooters as they do for safe syringe disposal?
If Arroyo’s measure is passed after the traditional public hearings, I predict a mass exodus of fans of Fireball and Dr. McGillicuddy’s to the few towns still resisting top-down temperance tyranny.
From the Anti-Saloon League to the Anti-Nip League… how far we have come as a city!
Guinea Pigs, Be Gone!
If cancelling the baby booze containers wasn’t enough, I’ve got news for you. City Councilor Liz Breadon is coming for your guinea pigs.
“Life-long” environmentalist Breadon (since her birth in Northern Ireland?) cited a previously unnoticed 37 percent uptick in guinea pig forfeiture at animal shelters and a “surge” in strays “all across the city.”
Her solution? Bar pet stores from peddling the cuddly rodents. Under Breadon’s suggested measure, Boston residents will be able to purchase designer guinea pigs directly from breeders or rescue rodents from the MSPCA. She’s just cutting out the middleman, a.k.a. the small business owner.
Just another reason for an aspiring merchant—in this case, someone who wants to operate a pet store—not to open his doors in Boston. More City Hall red tape—who needs it? He could just as easily break ground in a sanctuary city for guinea pig sales.
Or does this just open a new market for bootlegging? You know, like with menthol cigarettes, now outlawed in Massachusetts while marijuana dispensaries seem to be popping up on every other street corner.
By the way, a guinea pig has a lifespan of five to seven years. They thrive in social companionship with other guinea pigs. Under this poorly thought-out policy, it’ll be necessary to import even your rescue guinea pigs from Newton or Quincy by 2030.
Is an infestation of homeless guinea pigs profound an issue enough to ban a profitable pet-store product line?
One important question remains: Will I qualify for a “Who Rescued Who?” bumper sticker after adopting a vagrant, free-range guinea pig?
First City Hall came for my Fireballs and I said nothing. Then they came for my Fluffy and I said nothing….
What will the Boston City Council think of next? I don’t think we want to know.