Monday, April 16, 2007

Those Somali Cab Drivers - The Final Resolution

According to a Minneapolis TV station, the Minneapolis Metropolitan Airports Commission has decided that any airport cab driver who refuses to take a passenger carrying alcohol will lose his privileges for 30 days for the first offense, two years for the second one. Some Somali cab drivers had refused to transport alcohol, citing Islamic prohibitions against doing so, an argument Muslim cabbies in no other American city had made.

It is a fairly stern punishment. While some drivers had apparently wanted separate lines for passengers with and without alcohol, and special signs on the top of the cab for those who wouldn't carry alcohol, I had contended here, based on economic-efficiency reasoning, that the proper response was to send such cabbies to the back of the line every time they refused a fare. One commenter dissented, arguing essentially that civilizational cohesion was at stake. Thanks in part to apparently great outrage from all over the country, he appears to have won the argument.



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