Liquor Police in Action

Not only do Utah politicians and government officials (generally of the GOP variety) prefer not to drink, not understand alcohol, and legislatively restrict it, but they also vindictively go after bars and private clubs, often using entrapment to find reason to give them citations:
State undercover liquor-control agents made lewd propositions to a waitress, then waved a $5 bill at a boisterous woman in a Clearfield club, daring her to expose herself in what they later explained were tactics to fit in with the crowd.

At an American Fork restaurant, agents badgered a waiter into bringing them a round of beers, then ticketed the eatery for serving alcohol without a required meal.

And in a Salt Lake City pub, three agents ordered shots, two purposefully left the table, then they cited the server for delivering too many drinks.
Agents also apparently do a lot of this, to create open container violations:
In April, the Tooele bowling alley Star Lanes was fined $800 after agents left with drinks in their hands.
It is no wonder why Utah drinkers and bar owners feel persecuted, and these actions can't help but create animosity towards the government and the majority religion here.


  1. I may not be qualified to comment on this topic, but I'll share my thoughts.

    I say I might not be qualified, because I don't drink alcohol.

    Here's what I think: No one should have the right to tell those who do want to drink, when and how they should drink alcohol, if they are not causing harm to others.

    What is the purpose behind the laws and enforcement tactics? Is it to prevent alcohol related infractions such as drunk driving? If that is the goal, then agents using the methods described in the FTP show on Friday and in this post will not prevent that from happening.

    If the goal is to harass people into submitting to a different value system, then the tactics being used are appropriate.

    That is where I get bothered with what I have heard and read on this topic recently. Taking away someone's right to consume alcohol is not what I want the state laws to do – especially if the reason is because you want to impose your ideas on others. I do want the laws and regulations to reduce the possibility that I might come in contact with an intoxicated driver in some traumatic way.

    To me, it’s similar to the seat belt laws. Now don't get worried, I agree that children need to be in car seats or boosters until they are the appropriate age or height. But I do have concern with the laws for adults.

    What’s the goal there? If I buckle up in my car, am I really going to drive safer? Is it going to keep me alive if I do crash?
    I won't try to dispute the possibility that a person buckled will or will not die in a car crash compared to the chances of a non-buckled occupant to die in a crash, but I do know there are still car crashes every day.

    There are still injuries and there are still deaths to un-buckled AND buckled vehicle occupants on the highways all over the state/country.

    If I want to drive a car, I have to make sure I do it in a way that it does not harm another person. Can I complete that requirement without a seatbelt on? If I am injured or die, then I paid the price for my choice. If I harm another person then I must be held responsible for driving irresponsibly – even if I had a seatbelt on!

    If a person chooses to drink alcohol in a home or a bar or wherever, the laws should allow that person to enjoy the right to do so, as long as it does not harm another person.

    Maybe I have removed all doubts as to my stupidity in matters such as these, but that's how I feel.

  2. Greg, your comments make sense, and I agree. If we want to stop DUIs, the thing to do is increase the penalty. I think in many places, the punishment for that is too lenient. I'm not sure how Utah's laws are for DUI.

  3. Craig: this post was eye-opening. And the things the authorities are pulling are audacious!

    Greg: I do think seat belts should be required if an adult is riding with others (especially children) because if they are in an accident, his unrestrained body could harm a child. But if riding alone, an adult should be able to choose for themselves whether to buckle or not.

  4. The problem with the things Craig pointed out isn't whether the laws are too restrictive, it's that what the police are doing is illegal. Those are all cases of flagrant entrapment. The laws these crooked cops are "enforcing" are pretty ridiculous, but the way they go about it is much more disturbing.