Babies and children being brought to bars seems to be a rage that is slowly creeping across the nation and with it a number of legal, moral, and parental responsibility issues. CNN recently had a story showing a bar in Brooklyn that appeared to have an open policy for admitting the wee tykes into the establishment along with their alcohol thirsting parents.
Now there is a growing debate throughout the nation and the Metro Detroit area dealing with the appropriateness of whether it is responsible parenting to bring a baby or child into a bar. It is of trivial import whether the parent cannot find a babysitter or needs to have the one drink or three that allows them to feel as if they are back in the pre-child wild and carefree days.
There are, of course, a number of issues that bar owners as well as bar patrons will have to deal with if this notion becomes more than a temporary fad. It brings up one obvious question for the parent – besides the type of role modeling the parent is setting for the baby or child. If the parent wants to enjoy an adult beverage while the baby or child is around, then why not go to an establishment like an Applebee’s which allows alcohol and still maintains a family-like atmosphere?
The Brooklyn baby bar hopping for some patrons may be more than a little unsettling. For example, many have complained in online responses that with babies in bars are the patrons who are used to adult conversation and behavior now supposed to watch what they say until the “baby happy hour” is over. And when, exactly, is that?
What happens after happy hour? Are bar owners now supposed to set up a baby play area next to the pool table or the dartboard or even the bar? What will happen when a bar patron becomes a little too inebriated and belligerent or heaven forbid it is the parent who is the designated person in this scenario?
As one can see the moral and legal dilemmas are seemingly countless and others might take it a few steps further and label the idea pretty outrageous and irresponsible.
So Brooklyn, Ann Arbor or other cities that either have or are contemplating letting babies sidle up to the neighborhood bar, think about your responsibility and culpability.
Parents, before you think about the need for a drink with the boys or the girls stop for a moment and think about your kid because one day if this escalates it may be a police officer pulling over your car and offering to give both parent and baby a sobriety test.
If you agree or disagree let me know what you think by contacting me at: http://tinyurl.com/yfwjknl