I'm with Ben Franklin. Apparently he said, "Beer is proof God loves us, and wants us to be happy." But how do I convince the excitable Muslims?
Never mind. Perhaps I need to lead by example. Or promote fairytales. In the unvarnished Little Snow White (based on the 1914 translation), we meet a young European drinker. Her name? Why, Snow White:
But Snow-white was growing up, and grew more and more beautiful; and when she was seven years old she was as beautiful as the day, and more beautiful than the Queen herself.
Little Snow-white was so hungry and thirsty that she ate some vegetables and bread from each plate and drank a drop of wine out of each mug, for she did not wish to take all from one only.
And, I suspect the seventh - "Who has been drinking out of my mug?" - dwarf was very concerned. (In the Islamist version, Snow White and the infidel dwarves are beheaded.)
History to be sure is instructive. "In England," writes the historian Geoffrey Blainey, "home-brewed beer, drunk at nearly every meal, was almost as essential as bread in the daily diet. At a well-known boarding school in London in 1704 breakfast for the boys consisted of bread and beer, while the poor people received beer at nearly every meal."
Today, in my area, some elite private school boys still drink beer in the morning (but please don't tell the principal sir).
Obviously this is not to suggest that drunks are cool. Not at all. I'm a burping scholar and a gentleman.
Drunkenness can hurt lives people. But so can the drink police. Brainteaser: Was Hitler, the teetotaller, more collegial than Jesus, the drinking moderate?
"Though Christian objections to alcohol and tobacco may be called ‘Puritanical' by some, these stances are actually of much more recent vintage. In fact, the Puritans drank beer. The Mayflower log book from 1620 records that one of the reasons that ship stopped at Plymouth, rather than searching for a more hospitable spot further south, was ‘our victuals being much spent, especially our beere.'"
First off: Why do liberals like to portray godly Puritans as angry abolitionists, and Muslim teetotallers as "religion of peace" followers?
Second off: Were womanly Christian sects and KKK Democrats to blame for prohibition? In any case, 2009's Democratic Party petticoats are waging today's anti-beer jihads.
The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia states that wine "functions in three significant ways in the Lord's Supper." Red wine symbolizes Christ's blood. Wine is also a table drink and it symbolizes fellowship. "Finally, the Lord's Supper looks to the future. It is the anticipation of the messianic banquet that is to come. At the Last Supper Jesus says, ‘from now on I shall not drink the fruit of the vine until the Kingdom of God comes' (Lk. 22:18)" but we are free to take booze cruises.
Escapism is fun. In the Old Testament drinking rights and social justice issues walk hand in hand. Proverbs 31:6-7 matter-of-factly states: "Give beer to those who are perishing, wine to those who are in anguish; let them drink and forget their poverty and remember their misery no more." In the socialist tradition, Democratic petticoats tax Joe America's beer.
Alcohol, then, can be used for good and bad. Or as Martin Luther, the great Christian reformer put it:
"Do you suppose that abuses are eliminated by destroying the object which is abused? Men can go wrong with wine and women. Shall we then prohibit and abolish women?"
But when I really need to find a good argument against prohibition, I point to Saudi Arabia.
Turning to the New Testament, we find that God is still against prohibition. In 1 Timothy 5:23, for example, the medicinal benefits of wine are understood (before the French Paradox): "Stop drinking only water, and use a little wine because of your stomach and your frequent illnesses."
And, unlike mainstream libertarians, I'm not against prohibition because it doesn't work, by the way. I'm against prohibition because it "works" for the wrong people. Why should millions of people miss out on the medicinal benefits of drinking because of Senator Ted Kennedy's infamous drive through Chappaquiddick?
In the leftist version of Snow White, the wine-sipping girl is medicated for ADHD, and the dwarves are taxed.