Edward L. Glaeser (“Boston after dark”) attempted to hold up the North End as one example of how high alcohol density can be achieved in Boston while having a relatively low rate of crime. However, a flaw in this argument is that a high proportion of the North End’s alcohol outlets are restaurants that do not stay open late, and so the North End example actually counters the case Glaeser makes to keep bars open longer.
I don’t want late-night drinking in my Boston community, nor do I want my community’s residents coming back from other Boston areas after late-night drinking. While Glaeser admits that allowing bars to stay open later in only a select part of Boston would result in what he referred to as “alco-commuting, in which late-night revelers would travel after midnight to get to the city’s one late-night spot,” he somehow supports extended bar-operating hours in multiple areas of the city without acknowledging that there would be “alco-commuting” from people living outside Boston. He admits that “extra late-night travel seems like the last thing we want.”
What we do want are the right kinds of travelers. Years ago I moved 1,000 miles to plant myself in a region of the country where I did not know anyone, and I did this solely because Boston has the greatest institutions and mentors. People who want to drink all night are often not the best and brightest the world has to offer.