Referendum posed too many potential pitfalls

To the editor:

Fayette Township, Juniata County, has just come through a rather contentious referendum in regard to the sale of alcohol.

The Juniata County Woman’s Christian Temperance Union would like to thank all those who helped alert voters to the issue, who were willing to discuss the issue with their friends, who contributed to the ads we ran, and most of all to those, on both sides, who were willing to go to the polls to exercise their right to determine the will of the people.

Since the vote, I’ve heard those who voted against the sale of alcohol described on social media as “old people who shuffled into the polls” and Juniata County described as old fashioned. I’m grateful to still be able to “shuffle” in to vote with my judgment unclouded by alcohol and even if I shuffle, I will not stumble because my motor skills have been impaired by the same. And I’m inclined to interpret this vote as a sign that Juniata County is in the forefront of battling against substances which may cause addiction and definitely contribute to many social problems of 2018 and beyond.

That said, I would encourage those who voted against the sale to show some compassion to those who voted yes.

There were many reasons why individuals voted no. Some recognized that the initiative would open the township to possible multiple licenses. There were those concerned with the increased number of drinking drivers it would put on the roads. Some were concerned with the social, health, family and economic issues related to the use of alcohol. Some were concerned with the students who would daily pass by and the ease with which fake IDs can be obtained. Whatever the reasons for the vote, we showed, by a vote of 2 to 1, that Fayette Township is doing just fine as a dry township. Thank you to all.

Now I must go practice my shuffle.

Rosalita J. Leonard

Vice President, Juniata County Woman’s Christian Temperance Union

Promotion Director, Pennsylvania WCTU