Opinion: Yucatan’s ley seca has outlived its usefulness

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To the editor:

The governor of Yucatan may want to make sure he is not liable for the deaths caused by implementing ley seca {the “dry law” banning alcohol sales}. Seven people in a Yucatan village have reportedly paid the ultimate price while several others are sickened from bootleg alcohol. Deaths that otherwise would have been avoided.

The governor claims that there are reduced car accidents too, but that is simply because there is almost no traffic from the stay-home order, not ley seca. Ley seca appears to be a law that has outlived its usefulness.

Observations indicate increased crime, violence and death as a result of the ley seca dry law – not less. There is every indication many people over-purchase before ley seca, and historically overindulge when the ban is lifted.

Would it not be more prudent to directly address those who struggle than involving everyone? Statistics show heart attack, cancer, diabetes, suicide, automobile accidents are major causes of death. Should the state ban certain unhealthy foods, or remove cars from the road?

Bootleg alcohol has its risks. So far, 100 deaths are reported in Mexico from bootleg alcohol poisoning. All these deaths and sicknesses from ley seca could have been avoided. Why invoke an ineffective law that only creates trouble, anger and tragedy. It seems clear that if state efforts are well-meaning, more lives would be saved by eliminating ley seca than by implementing it. Why not direct health efforts to where they are needed, rather than creating new health problems?

Given the time ley seca started, it seems it’s doing a better job in contributing to mortality rates than COVID-19. I would hope the state rescinds the ley seca order before being accused of contributing to deaths, injuries and crimes as a result of it.

The author is a local business owner who wishes to remain anonymous.

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