Our legislators must stop Governor Paterson's proposal to legalize the sale of wine in grocery stores.

If this becomes law, many small businesses will be forced to close their doors, costing the state thousands of valuable jobs. New York already leads the nation in job losses, and I can't imagine why the state would sanction a proposal that makes things worse.

Plus, this proposal would make it much easier for teenagers to get access to alcohol. New York wine sellers are small businesses whose licenses are revoked if they fail to prevent youth from purchasing alcohol. Grocery stores cannot manage this risk as effectively. New York would become like

Florida, California and Texas, where wine is sold everywhere and where three times as many kids under 21 die each year from alcohol-related incidents.

Our state has felt enough pain. We must demand that the governor and legislature kill this proposal before April 1.

Edward Wassmer

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