by tommy kirchhoff
First and foremost, I point out that the Constitution of the United States—the very womb from which our rights as Americans were born—specifically provides for the manufacture and sale of intoxicating liquors through the 21st Amendment. In the year 1919, The United States of America tried to prohibit alcoholic beverages; the effort was a complete failure, and the Constitutional Amendment had to be repealed fourteen years later.
The 14th Amendment to the Constitution of the United States makes clear that “No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of liberty.” By the Constitution, if an American citizen chooses to consume or advertise alcohol, certainly he or she is at liberty and has the privilege to do so.
Most importantly, the 1st Amendment to the Constitution of the United States—the plateau that we have fought over, men have died for, and provides Americans with freedoms beyond all other places in the world—makes two things very, very clear:
1. “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion.”
These are the first words of our Bill of Rights. These words mean religion
and state are separated. They mean no religion shall make laws, nor shall
it try to enforce laws created in vain to control any set of U.S. citizens.
2. “Congress shall make no laws abridging the freedom of speech.” This statement is crystal clear, and needs no explanation as to its relevancy to advertising. Utah State Senator Parley Hellewell is a Mormon. Utah State Representative Roger Barrus is a Mormon.
Utah State Senator Dan Eastman is a Mormon who was quoted in the Salt Lake Tribune threatening a personal crusade to limit liquor advertising “whether it’s constitutional or not.” Senator Eastman is a constitutional sodomizer; obviously he has no respect for the Constitution of the United States—the document that allows him to practice Mormonism and keeps him from the clutches of Terrorism, Socialism and censorship. Senator Eastman, you sir are a disgraceful citizen who takes America’s history and hardships for granted.
The sovereign State of Utah clings dearly to a group of 18 “alcohol control states.” Utah believes the laws and processes here are akin to all other “control states,” and that although “control states” are the minority, they are barely so. I recently spent three days in Michigan—another “alcohol control state.” I was off the plane no more than 20 minutes, driving in my rental car, when I heard an ad on the radio for a hangover cure pill. “You wanna have a good time with your friends, right? Just take (brand) before you drink, and no hangover the next day!” Never in Utah.
Two hours up the road, I came to my hometown. The Big Buck restaurant and brewery is clearly visible from the highway—decorated by an outdoor, 15 foot-tall bottle of Big Buck Beer. Certainly Mormon politicians would not let that happen here.
On Sunday morning at approximately 11:30 a.m., my family and I went to Ruby Tuesday for an early lunch. As we sat down, the first words from our waitress were regarding the drink special—Bloody Mary’s for $3.25. How could a “control state” allow such a sin?
The next day I drove to Grand Rapids, a staunchly religious city (overwhelmingly Dutch Christian Reformed) in the “control state” of Michigan. Because I was outside the alcohol-lockdown of Utah, I ordered a Long Island Ice Tea with lunch. This cocktail contains one ounce of vodka, one ounce of rum, one ounce of tequila, one ounce of gin (all 80 proof), and one ounce of Triple Sec (a 40 proof liqueur). Drinks in Utah are limited to one metered ounce of hard alcohol. The “family-destroying” cocktail I ordered in Michigan was served hassle-free in another “alcohol control state.”
In brief, the laws and anti-alcohol crusades of Utah politicians are not due to any force other than one single religion—Mormonism. These crusades and laws are doubly unconstitutional: first because they abridge the privileges and liberties of U.S. citizens, and second because they are created by a church. Nowhere else in the United States of America exists a tyranny like this.
--comments submitted to the Utah ABCC by Tommy Kirchhoff, Sept. 21, 2001