Columbia, SC — I have been working and playing in Five Points since 1974. I have owned a retail business there since 1990. And I admit I’ve done a great deal of drinking in a number of establishments over the years. While I realize drunk people occasionally do stupid things — and I’m no exception — the worst thing most actual bar patrons do in Five Points is get too drunk.
Police chasing 19- and 20-year-olds with fake IDs (thanks Ronald Reagan), watching for petty traffic and parking violations, and looking for people smoking weed in their cars is not the best solution to what ails Five Points. Yeah, I know those are, technically, crimes, but seriously: Who really cares?
We need to go after violent criminals first and foremost. Most rapists, car thieves, muggers and gang members are not drinking in any of the establishments; they are roaming predators. Let’s wake up and smell the stale beer and urine and go after the perpetrators.
As for Warren Bolton’s Friday column, “Let’s admit it, Five Points has a drinking problem,” if he could get an actual clue, that would be great. The problem in Five Points is gangs, not demon alcohol. Period. Ignoring facts doesn’t change them.
Spare us any more of that “Nothing good ever happens after midnight” nonsense. Sorry mom, all the best stuff goes down after midnight. And everybody knows it. Or should be able to remember. Or else they’re hypocrites.
Harrison M. Palmer