Close the book on crime at Danny’s

Published 12:00 am Friday, January 16, 2009

The men and one woman of the Vidalia Board of Aldermen are all too kind-hearted.

They sat quietly Tuesday as the owners of Danny’s Lounge called into question their integrity.

They remained pleasant as the mumbled criticisms of a packed and angry house turned to loud outbursts.

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And they kept quiet about the disrespect many in the room were showing not only to themselves, but to the board, too.

Then, the members of the board extended what appears to be a second chance.

The city has evidence that Danny’s Lounge and the nearby parking area used by its patrons is a bad, bad place to be. Repeated shootings, stabbings and fights on or near Danny’s property have resulted in 37 police reports in three years.

The police have confiscated guns and knives.

And the city has denied the bar’s liquor license.

Yet now, the aldermen agreed to let a group of city officials meet with Danny’s owners in hopes of finding a compromise.

Vidalia is just too kind, it seems.

Well, you can’t criticize kindness.

But, after Danny’s has been given its fair stump to speak on, we hope the city will do what is necessary to stop the crimes — even if that means closing Danny’s.

At this point, it is obvious that the city knows Danny’s is trouble. If anyone is killed or injured at the bar, and the city hasn’t done anything to stop it, the city may be liable.

The owners of Danny’s Lounge have made it clear they cannot or will not police their own establishment.

Vidalia Police officers have other fish to fry and can’t simply park at Danny’s awaiting gunshots. Taxpayer dollars shouldn’t fund bar security.

Though we are happy the Vidalia aldermen are such nice folks, we’re ready to see the book closed on this problem, before the story becomes a tragedy.