The laws about alcohol are pretty interesting in rural, or, Aboriginal, Australia. This sign is on a road into Alice Springs, and the penalties for drinking in public are displayed.. Tipping out – sure. A fine (and that’s a lot of money if you are unemployed) – well sure.
But a court order to stop drinking???
Insane. Might as well order unmarried people to stop having sex, overweight people to stop eating junk food, every driver to stop speeding on occasion and smokers to stop smoking.
It is not going to happen.
The more I see of rural Australia, the more I believe that this is a poverty gap situation more than anything else. Poverty, isolation and despair drives the alcohol and behavioral problems. The Aboriginals have it hard, with mryiads of tribes and languages, ‘assisted’ by often misguided handouts and advice (e.g. Don’t hunt and gather but take this money and buy bad food and sit around.)
Meanwhile some communities seem to have a positive mindset,, while others are terrible.
My two cents? Help the ones that want to be helped, and let the others see the results. ‘Help’ means roads, cell phone coverage, subsidized healthy food and anything to help communities create jobs.
And stop the stupid laws that fail to treat symptoms. The ‘grog run’ is alive and well in rural Australia, regardless of the law, alcohol and petrol (for sniffing) are getting through.