Sunday, August 21, 2011

Not in front of the children

The Sunday Telegraph reports that two mothers were refused white wine spritzers in a City of London pub because the barperson thought it inappropriate for them to be drinking alcohol in front of their children. Now obviously this is just a one-off aberration, and if it was generally adopted it would kill the “family dining” market stone dead.

But it is symptomatic of the growing stigmatisation of alcohol that such an opinion was expressed at all. It’s a more extreme version of the refusal to serve a pregnant woman even a single drink. The view is becoming increasingly common than any quantity of alcohol is incompatible with any responsible activity (see my recent poll about lunchtime drinking at work) and we are heading towards a situation where drinking becomes an activity that has to be ringfenced from the rest of society.