We’ve all seen it. A kid going into a hissy-fit because he can’t have what he wants. Kicking, and yelling until he gets his way. And the parent, rather than doing the right thing, just gives in and gives the spoiled kid whatever he wants. A quick fix to keep the kid quiet. Only to have it happen over and over again, except that the ‘wants’ get more extreme, until the kid is totally out of control and the parents give-up. The parents are classic enablers contributing to the problem they want to solve.
In this case the kids are the downtown bar owners, and the enabling parents are the Naperville city council members.
When World of Beer requested and was granted a ‘No-food liquor license’, downtown bar owners were not a happy bunch. They said why should World of Beer be allowed a no-food liquor license, yet we have to serve food while we’re open. Well first of all World of Beer is not downtown and secondly the business model is totally different.
In essence, downtown bar owners said, we want what they have, and if you don’t give us what we want, we will file suit. After hearing that, council members were in a quandary. What could the council do to keep everybody happy. Bingo. They came up with a solution. They allowed the closure of downtown bar kitchens late at night as a concession to the crying and whining bar owners. This resulted in ‘no late-night food in downtown bars, and no law suit.
The result also turned every one of those downtown establishments into nothing more than another late-night tavern pumping out shots, and beer by the barrel. Is it any wonder why downtown Naperville after 11pm at night becomes a different town.