Beer at this year’s Smokin’ in McMinnville BBQ cookoff will be back under consideration during Tuesday night’s Board of Mayor and Aldermen meeting.
The city rejected a special event beer permit by Junior Auxiliary during its June 24 meeting with the vote ending in a 3-3 tie. Voting in favor of allowing beer were Mayor Jimmy Haley, Vice Mayor Ben Newman and Alderman Rick Barnes. Voting against beer sales and stating moral and religious beliefs were Aldermen Jimmy Bonner, Mike Neal and Ken Smith.
Alderman Billy Wood says he would have voted in favor of the measure and he does not share the views of those who voted against.
“I absolutely would have voted for it,” said Wood. “I know all about the Sadducees and Pharisees. I know when someone is simply trying to be a Publican. I also know about the Ten Command-ments and not one of them deals with alcohol. The Bible is very specific about drunkenness, but that’s not what this is about. This is about beer being served at a BBQ festival that the city of McMinnville passed an ordinance that they would do so, and now we are trying to dictate morality.”
Wood says people should be allowed to make their own decision.
“They are not going to make you drink a beer if you don’t want it,” said Wood. “You buy groceries at grocery stores that sell alcohol. They don’t have a two-drink minimum when you go in to get milk and eggs, no more than they are going to make you drink a beer at the BBQ festival. If you don’t want it, you don’t have to purchase it. Some restaurants serve alcohol. If you don’t want it, you don’t purchase it. Who are we to try and dictate morality?”
Wood was on the board when officials made the decision to allow nonprofit organizations to apply for a special event beer permit and sell beer at sanctioned events as a fundraiser.
The ordinance passed in 2010.