Stephen Leacock, "The Tyranny of Prohibition,"
The Social Criticism of Stephen Leacock, ed. Alan Bowker
(U of Toronto Press, 1973) 69.
"It is, of course, inevitable that a legislative code
resting on so false a basis cannot last. Prohibition will
not last forever. Sooner or later there will be a return to
common sense and common justice. But the end will not come
for a long time yet. Organized tyranny is difficult to
break…. Without the war, national prohibition would never
have been voted even by the politicians. It has swept
through the Legislatures on a false wave of agitation
masquerading as patriotism. It owed much to the fact that
Germans are by way of drinking beer, and that such names as
Anheuser Busch and Schlitz and Papst do not somehow sound
altogether British. But as it came, so it will go. The
unexpected will happen again. In the course of time some
unforeseen contingency will send a new amendment rippling
through the American Legislatures. Social life and
individual liberty will be freed from the incubus that now
lies on them.
Meanwhile, it is well for the British people to be
warned. If they do not strangle in its cradle the snake of
prohibition, then the country will be given over in its due
time to the regime of the fanatic, the informer and the
tyrant, such as we have in North America even now."