Regarding your “Taking It to the Streets” entry in the June-July 2009 issue of Ale Street News, you erringly stepped in a proverbial ‘steaming pile’ of poo.
“There are whole chunks of American cities with no craft beer; there are whole demographics that aren’t drinking it. How come? It’s not a fear of flavor, or being too cheap: a lot more women drink good wine than drink good beer, gays and lesbians similarly enjoy good wine, and black folk have gone into cognac in a big way. Yes, there are people from those groups drinking craft beer, but not enough.”
Haven’t we beaten the demographic stereotype into the ground enough? Statistics are nothing but what we want them to be and are always manipulated in varying degrees by parties of interest with something to gain. Considering the humongous melting pot that we call the world and within it our small microcosm known as the United States of America, when are we going to get away from short-sighted archaic demographical stereotypes and just let people be people? Are we doomed to live in an endless circle of creating and living by transitory expectations? How about letting the pints land where they may, and then be there to celebrate them.
Since we’re getting personal…
I buzz my head because it is me; it is what my being is most comfortable in. Does that make me a flannel-wearing, softball playing, bud-light drinking, or in your case, wine drinking, truck driving macho butch of a dyke? (since we’re playing the stereotypical demographic game) Anyone who knows me knows that is the furthest from the truth, yet because the stereotype is perpetuated far more than the individuals themselves, a box of single-sighted preconceptions are what I am left to deal with time and time again.
Seeing as craft and import beer can be viewed as much of a victim of stereotyping and demographic pigeon-holing, why would we want to impose on our passionate drinkers, new and old, the same baggage we are trying to break free from?
As a lesbian, I find wide sweeping references such as the one above to be nothing but empty facts based on hearsay and tired stereotypes. No one lives in a one-sided box, least of all myself. Does that mean that there are lesbians and gays that fit that stereotype, as you so put it? Of course. Is that the whole of their person? No. Is it a valid base for a generalized statistic that only serves to perpetuate a tired stereotype? No. Does it perform more harm than good to the Great Beer Quest? Yes.
Enjoy wine, I do not. Good beer, yes. In fact, I greatly enjoy craft and import beer, a dram of Scotch or Irish whisky (water on the side), a snifter of sipping rum, or an expertly crafted classic cocktail. I’ll take all of the above over a good wine any minute of any day.
There will always be those who are satisfied with having someone else define their character, but please don’t try to pull that cheap trick with me. Very little aggravates and frustrates me more than comments made carelessly that thousands of people are going to read and blindly take to heart. We are a culture largely reliant on mass-marketing these days, after all.
Everyone is entitled to their opinion and position and I regularly enjoy your articles, the ones I agree with and even the ones I don’t. As much as a good drink is about individuality, so too are the drinkers. There is only one Kristyn Lier, thankfully, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.
Ambassador of Fine Craft & Import Beers
(an original written work by Kristyn Lier. plagiarism is not tolerated)