Stephen Leacock, "The Tyranny of Prohibition,"
The Social Criticism of Stephen Leacock, ed. Alan Bowker
(U of Toronto Press, 1973) 65.
"Thus in the matter of real rule the politician is
nowhere. His only aim is to give the public what the public
wants or at least what the public seems to ask for. And the
politician has heard apparently only a single voice. On the
one hand were the prohibitionists – articulate, strident,
fanatical, highly organized, amply supplied with money, with
the name of religion upon their lips, ready at a moment’s
notice to lash themselves into a fit of hysteria, and to
attack with overwhelming force the personal fortunes and the
political position of anyone who should dare to oppose them.
On the other side was the general public, the vast majority
of whom were, and are, opposed to national prohibition, but
among whom no individual, or at best only one or two in
thousands, was prepared to take the risk of open opposition
to the relentless and fanatical minority."