Press "Enter" to skip to content

Georgia Passes Law Criminalizing Giving Water to People Waiting in Merch Lines

ATLANTA — Georgia’s governor has signed a bill prohibiting the act of offering water to thirsty audience members queuing in long merch lines, bewildered legal experts confirmed.

“This is a boon for venue owners,” said Phil Stubbs, proprietor of The Vexed Crab nightclub. “All those people in line ain’t drinking, so we ain’t earning. Usually someone will wait in line and their friend will bring them some water. We stopped giving out free water at the bar a long time ago, but these skinflints will just fill a cup in the bathroom sink. All these lousy water drinkers really cut into our bar take. This law means those cheapskates will have to bring their friend at least a $8 PBR tallboy instead. People like beer more than water, anyway, so this is a win-win situation.”

Concert-goers who fought against the law’s passage are disappointed that the state has once again sided with powerful special interests over the consumer.

“Last summer I went to an outdoor festival that was apparently testing the practices that have now become law,” said Miranda Speight, 26. “My friend and I wanted to grab some t-shirts. After standing in line in the hot sun for half an hour, she finally went to get us water. But when she got back, a security guard knocked the cups out of her hands and demanded she go back and get beers, or at least hard seltzers. I wound up in the emergency room from dehydration that day. I never did get that goddamned shirt.”

ACLU spokesman Andrew Gruber argues that the new law is unconstitutional and should be repealed.

“With the Citizens United ruling, the Supreme Court decided that political donations from corporations were protected as free speech,” said Gruber. “The same logic should apply here. In fact, the Georgia law was passed under the disingenuous premise that a bad actor could influence which band’s merch someone will buy if they’re given water. But anyone can see it’s just a cash-grab by the venues to increase thirst in an effort to sell more beer. Especially since there is no rule in place prohibiting offering beer, liquor or even a basket of curly fries to people.”

At press time, a local concert attendee was released after having been wrongfully apprehended for giving what turned out to be a $22 vodka on the rocks—not water—to a friend.