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Wednesday, April 4, 2012
Songkran is just around the corner and I am so confused
I held an actual Bangkok Post in my hand yesterday and spotted this article, Column THE ROUND-UP: Safe Songkran campaign opens Tue, 04/03/2012 - 10:05 — staff
BANGKOK POST Issued date 3 April 2012
More than 136 organisations are jointly campaigning to prevent the Songkran holiday turning into a hedonistic party. Adviser to the interior minister Paiwong Techanarong, accompanied by 136 state and private organisations,yesterday launched a campaign,"Safe Songkran, Alcohol Free", to cut the Songkran road accident toll. The organisations include the Interior Ministry, Committee of Alcoholic Beverage Control, Public Health Ministry, Royal Thai Police,Thai Health Promotion Foundation,doctor networks and accident prevention networks. The group's aims are to establish alcohol-free zones over Songkran,oppose advocates of tobacco and alcohol which market their products during the festival,tighten enforcement of alcohol laws, and restore Songkran traditions.Mr Paiwong said 70 areas designated for Songkran festivities in 50 provinces, including Khao Niew Road in Khon Kaen, have been declared alcohol-free zones. Khao San Road in Bangkok, however, which is one of the city's most popular venues for celebrating the water-spraying festival, has yet to join the campaign.
I would think that it might be an idea to enforce the alcohol laws should be tightened for about 365 days of the year. It might also help to enforce the road safety laws occasionally. Driving on the correct side of a dual carriage-way, not crossing a solid yellow line and right of way to pedestrians when that is the legal thing to do such as at zebra crossings and cross-walks.
Restoring Songkran Traditions is one of those bigoted statements bandied about by the Central, or more correctly Bangkok Thais with some regularity. Thailand is a multicultural state that has many traditions and all should be respected. The bawdy traditions of Isaan to the formal traditions of the Court in Bangkok
And let us not forget that the Tourism Authority of Thailand would frown on such an idea during the "Worlds Biggest Water Fight". Next someone will want to do away with the "Full Moon Parties" that take place on Buddhist Uposatha days I have called Tourism Authority of Thailand Khon Kaen and the Toll Free number and no one in Khon Kaen has a clue about Khao Niew Road being an achohol free zone and I was too bored to tape the endless circle in Bangkok. I will venture to guess that we will read about the success of the alcohol free zones, while in reality knowing "It aint So. There will be plenty of bars going out of business if they were to do it and pleny of Thais and westerners heading out of town.