YOU know what I love about the Grand Canyon, other than that it is one awesome kick-arse hole in the ground?

Verboten: This glass-toting woman would be arrested in Australia

It’s got no fences. You are free to fall into it if you feel so inclined. Sure, there’s the odd sign telling you that straying too close to the edge could bring a premature and permanent end to your holiday, but that’s the extent of the bureaucratic concern.

If the Grand Canyon was in Australia, it would have a fence around it.

Too dangerous, the nannas who govern us would cry, to let people just explore it in a manner of their choosing.

All it would take would be one pissed idiot trying to see if he could wee into the river below to slip to his death and bang!, before you could yell ``look out below’’ there would be a 200m no-go zone back from the edge enforced by barriers and large fines.

That’s what we do in Australia now. We greet every possible danger with a regulatory baby-gets-the-flick-as-well-as-the-bathwater approach.

The latest attack on our freedoms is the steady withdrawal of glassware from pubs.

More and more watering holes around the country are serving up the suds in plastic because of a perceived rise in ``glassing’’ attacks _ the abhorrent and gutless practice of smashing a glass into the face of a usually unsuspecting pub patron.

What is going on here? Just because a few nutcases can’t control themselves, the rest of us have to suffer.

What sort of message are pubs giving to would-be drinkers by serving them plastic: watch your back, this place is the haunt of vicious drunks?

What happens next? Will restaurants insist diners only use plastic cutlery in case there’s a psychopath in the room who suddenly gets an urge to stab someone in the eye with a fork?

Perhaps Test cricketers will be made to play with plastic balls in case they get hit by a fired-up Brett Lee, or first-grade rugby league footballers made to play touch instead of tackle.

Let’s put the problem in perspective.

Government statistics show 157 people were admitted to Queensland hospitals after assaults involving glass in 2007-08.

That means that MILLIONS of people in the Sunshine State in the same period successfully had a drink at a pub without wearing a fist loaded with an empty schooner.

Beer tastes like cat’s urine when it is drunk out of plastic.

It is at its best in glass, drunk out of the bottle if you must but preferably poured into an appropriate chalice, its head admired, the colour observed and the aromas allowed to spiral up your nose as you take a swallow.

Beer is not a cheap drink any more and to ask people to drink it out of plastic in a pub is an insult. It is bad enough at sports grounds but at least there are some compelling reasons for insisting on plastic in stadiums, mainly because of the volume sold.

Instead of treating normal people like criminals and ruining their drinking experiences, why don’t the authorities crack down on the actual glassers?

Instead of assault charges being laid, make it a mandatory attempted-murder offence for an assault with a glass.

And just to underline how seriously the community views such behaviour, throw in a life ban on entering licensed premises.

Most commented


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    • Matt Cleary says:

      08:58am | 02/06/09

      I no longer drink at pubs that serve their beer in plastic (and you know who you are Coogee Bay Hotel).

      It’s like being given a fork with a cork stopper on the prongs because half a dozen eegits poke their eye out each year.


      They can take these bullshit rules - driven by a shock-jock media and political hacks who are their servants, and publicans looking to cover their arses - and mash them into so much chocolate ice cream slurry.

    • Karla Pincott says:

      09:23am | 02/06/09

      Exhibit B:
      Fly Qantas from Sydney to Melbourne—noted terrorist conduit—and struggle to eviscerate the bread roll with a plastic knife.
      Fly Emirates in and out of the Middle-East and get metal knives, with so far little danger to anything. Except the bread rolls.

    • Aaron says:

      12:02pm | 02/06/09

      It’s true Beer in a plastic cup is a waste of money as it does taste rubbish!
      And I always wondered why they only replaced the knife on most flight and still give you a metal fork? The fork was always sharper than the metal knife anyway… hmmmm!

    • BrettD says:

      03:19pm | 02/06/09

      Rory, while I agree with much of what you say, exactly how much cat’s urine have you consumed to make a valid comparison with beer out of plastic?

    • Shane-O says:

      03:47pm | 02/06/09

      Where will it end - There’s plenty of other weapons in the drink fridge behind the bar anyway. If these morons want to arm themselves - the arsenal of alcopops will do the trick just as swiftly.

      Beer does taste like crap out of glass. but whats stopping me buying a stubbie.

      This problem cant be solved with knee-jerk political wankery

      The life ban on Licenced premises is a BRILLIANT idea.  Keep these psychos at home. The missus better watch out though.

    • Daniel says:

      04:33pm | 02/06/09

      Avoiding the pubs that use plastic is possibly (probably) an excellent idea but not just because the beer tastes like urine our of plastic (does it?).  I would also suggest that the early plastic adopting pubs are doing so because of the high level of violence of their patrons.  Also the high proportion of “today tonight” watchers on their customer list would make the idea an easy sell.
      In any case that’s 3 great reasons to avoid pubs that serve in plastic.
      The reality is that I personally know many people that could put a person deep into a coma if they so desired without glass - it’s certainly not going to keep people safe but rather entirely avoid dealing with the problem of random violence.  A little “thought experiment” would go a long way on many of these social problems.

    • Michael says:

      04:35pm | 02/06/09

      I can’t bring myself to drink beer out of any container, but i think your on the right track there, i worked security in pubs and clubs and the one thing i noticed was ppl regard pubs as law free areas, much like the football field, they punch on over the smallest crap get dragged out by security and they are back the next week to carry on again. Police should get off their asses attend pubs and charge people who commit crimes, we shouldn’t rely on security in pubs they belong to the publican who has no interest in arrests being linked to his business.

    • Chris says:

      11:19pm | 02/06/09

      The problem is the contents, not the container.

    • sarah (glassed) says:

      09:45pm | 07/08/09

      when you’ve been glassed, you can comment.

    • Your name: says:

      05:03pm | 17/08/09

      for a start there are harsher sentences for glassers. prevention is better than cure. If you go somewhere with a prevailence of glassing, you will appreciate plastic


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