Later today, the Albany City Commission will meet. On their agenda will be Charley B’s and their liquor license. That means that today is the last opportunity to step up and do what you can to save a local business that hasn’t been found to do anything wrong.
Charley B’s greatest crime seems to be that there have been some fights at the bar. Big shock. After all, it’s a bar. I’ve seen bars in other areas have two fights in one single night and still keep going strong. Why? Because sometimes people act stupid. Unfortunately, alcohol makes the chances of it happening increase significantly. However, alcohol is legal. Attempts to curb alcohol consumption have failed miserably through the years. However, if that was what our commissioners were trying to do, at least their efforts against Charley B’s would make some sense.
But that’s not what they’re saying. Instead, they’re acting like Charley B’s is some haven for criminal activity. Folks, it’s not. It’s the same place it’s been for over 20 years. The atmosphere hasn’t really changed after all these years.
The apartments nearby claim that they have difficulty in keeping the units behind Charley B’s rented, which I’ll admit is a shame. However, why should another business be forced to disappear because a different business can’t maximize profits? After all, using that logic, Target should be shut down because Walmart doesn’t get to maximize the market. Don’t like that one? How about how some churches being shut down since they keep people from visiting bars?
One complaint is the number of beer bottles left in the parking lot on Monday morning. My mother retired from Manpower, which was in the same shopping center with Charley B’s, and this was one of their complaints. However, no one in that office ever argued that the bar should be shut down. Not only that, but the question still remains where those bottles came from. There is no evidence that has been presented that those bottles come from within the bar and with their consent. Instead, it’s been reported that the bottles come after Charley B’s has closed for the evening. Someone runs off, buys some beer, and the party moves to the parking lot. A parking lot that Charley B’s does not own, I might add.
The beer bottles are an issue for fellow residents, but let me point out how many of the other businesses in that shopping center have also been in those locations for many years. If this is such a problem, why aren’t businesses fleeing the site? If they were doing that, I’m quite sure that the landlord wouldn’t renew the bar’s lease. However, Charley B’s has been there for how long again? Yeah, that’s what I thought.
When one looks at the list of bars the city wants to close, there is one glaring fact. How many of the other bars being discussed are not located in an area generally considered “black”. While I don’t really believe that the city should close down businesses, I find the idea of trying to close down a bar just to avoid charges of racism to be absolutely ridiculous. Is that what’s happening? Honestly, I’m starting to think so. I hope I’m wrong, but am I? We will see.
Folks, if you want to see the Albany City Commission make the right decision, then you need to make sure your voice is heard. Do it now, before it’s too late.