The Phoenix DUI Law Blog

Happy Repeal Day! Celebrating Our Right to Drink (Responsibly)

We Americans like to think of our country as the "sweet land of liberty." So it's pretty shocking that less than 100 years ago our forefathers could've been thrown in jail for enjoying an alcoholic beverage.

Unsurprisingly, Prohibition failed to make drunkenness and crime things of the past. In fact, it only led to more crime. That's why 79 years ago today, America came to its senses and passed the 21st Amendment, restoring our right to imbibe.

What better way to celebrate Repeal Day than to drink some booze with friends and family? Here's a quick reminder of how we arrived at this day:

The Women's Christian Temperance Union was largely to blame for America's dark ages, aka Prohibition. The group had been pushing for alcohol prohibition for years.

On Jan. 16, 1919, the Temperance Union got its wish when Congress passed the the 18th Amendment. The Amendment barred "the manufacture, sale, or transportation of intoxicating liquors" in the United States.

While the Amendment was intended to curb crime, drunkenness, and general degeneracy, it was a fantastic failure. Organized crime outfits quickly stepped in to fill the shoes of formerly legal distributors. Booze was commonly available and violent crime shot up.

On Dec. 5, 1933, Congress admitted it had made a huge mistake and passed the 21st Amendment, repealing the 18th Amendment. On the 79th anniversary of the repeal, you may want to take a moment out of your day to have a drink and celebrate our right to imbibe.

While drinking is perfectly legal, drinking and driving is not. If you plan on going out to celebrate Repeal Day, remember to have a designated driver. Otherwise, call a taxi.

Cab fare is small change compared to DUI penalties. A first DUI offense is punishable by a minimum fine of $1,250, at least 10 days in jail, a minimum 90-day license suspension, and having an ignition interlock system installed in your car for at least a year.

With those warnings in mind, remember the key is to drink responsibly and in moderation. So have a happy (and safe) Repeal Day!

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