On Sunday, Politics for the People spent an hour with Lisa McGirr, the author of The War on Alcohol: Prohibition and the Rise of the American State. It was a very thought provoking conversation and we will posting highlights from the conference call in a few days.
Steve Hough is a P4P member from Florida. Steve is a retired accountant and a lifelong independent who is an activist in the movement for Top Two nonpartisan elections. Steve sent us his thoughts and some questions that he is mulling off the call.
I really enjoyed the book and last night’s call.The book was very informative. Before reading it, I had no idea of the role vigilantes played in enforcement efforts, that the KKK had quasi-legal status, or thought much about unequal enforcement. Also, even though I have read “In His Steps” a couple of times, I somehow never made the connection that prohibition was the result of “progressive” reform.Last night’s call covered several points well- the beginning of an expansive role for the federal government, the difficulty of turning back the clock, and vested interests in maintaining the status quo. It was discussed how the “war on drugs”, supplanted prohibition of alcohol and the interests of the prison industrial complex.Our hour went by quickly, but I wanted to ask Lisa to talk a little bit about how her work also relates to the military industrial complex (a more “liberal” concern) and other federal government agencies which our more “conservative” friends are so concerned about. And, if abortion were again illegal, would not Donald Trump have been technically correct? Just as drug users and dealers are subject to prosecution, would not both the abortion doctor and the woman having had an abortion be at risk of prosecution?Again, great call.”