January 31, 2013

Prohibition is Alive and Well in Some Mississippi Counties

English: Another "no alcohol" logo F...
English: Another "no alcohol" logo Fran├žais : Un logo « anti-alcool » de plus. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
You know those ad circulars that show up in your mailbox a couple times a month that are sort of a combination between a small local newspaper and a bunch of ads? Do you get these too? Anyway, I was looking through one the other day, and something quite strange caught my eye. Using public court records, this particular circular published recent arrest records. The name of the person arrested along with their date of birth, gender, race (this is Mississippi, after all), and charges were included.

One of the individuals listed had been charged with many things pertaining to what sounded like a traffic stop for suspected DUI. What caught my eye was this charge:
Possession of Beer/Wine in a Dry County
What? Not "minor in possession," as this individual was not a minor, but possession in a dry county. I do live in a dry county, and I am aware that the sale of alcohol is prohibited. If I want a beer, I have to drive into the next county to get it. I had no idea that one could be charged with a crime for legally purchasing alcohol and then bringing it home with me! Wasn't prohibition repealed?

I quit drinking a few years ago for various reasons. As a result, this law does not apply to me personally. Still, I find it troubling to say the least. Do I need to worry about it when friends and family visit me who do drink? My guess is that it is one of those things that is never enforced except during the course of other charges, but still.

This is yet another example of Christians - Southern Baptists in this case - imposing their religiously-based version of morality on everyone else. I realize that arguments could be made that banning the sale of alcohol or restricting it in some odd manner has redeeming social value. I do not agree with these arguments, but I can at least imagine what they would look like. But to ban the possession of alcohol and enforce it through criminal penalties is something else entirely.

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