Raise your glass, folks! Today is Repeal Day, which marks the anniversary of the end of federal alcohol prohibition in the United States.
To celebrate the occasion, I interviewed Jarrett Dieterle, a senior fellow at the R Street Institute and the author of a new report on “America’s Dumbest Drinking Laws,” about how Prohibition came about, what forces were empowered when alcohol was illegal, how alcohol laws changed after repeal, and the many ways in which the effects of Prohibition still linger today.
I’m a fan of cocktails and spirits, and Dieterle is an expert on both the history and current state of alcohol policy in the United States, so naturally the conversation turned to the many ways the two are, and have always been, intertwined.
What was the link between the temperance movement and anti-immigrant sentiments? How did drinks and drinking change during Prohibition? What are some of the bizarre and pointless ways in which states are still making it difficult to buy, mix, and consume alcohol? And—maybe most importantly—what should you be drinking tonight to celebrate Repeal Day?
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