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Pot and Prohibition

Published On: Dec 30 2013 11:44:32 PM CST

We took a look back at the day when alcohol became legal again.


Recreational marijuana dominates the headlines across Colorado.  On January 1st, anyone 21 and older will be able to purchase it legally.  But this isn’t the first time a “prohibition” has been lifted.

December 5, 1933, the 21st amendment was passed and alcohol’s prohibition was lifted.

The Colorado Springs Gazette wrote that the repeal hardly caused a ripple here.

“Liquor, never very hard to get even in the days when Colorado Springs was prohibition’s model city, flows legally sometime today” is how the paper opened its lead story.

Other articles in that edition talked about how city officials were scrambling to write their own alcohol regulations.  Another piece talked about the lawsuit the city was in with El Paso County for distribution of beer license fees.

But the fears many had about the return of alcohol weren’t realized.

“Curiously enough, drunkenness failed to make the public debauch that was predicted…” the paper reported.

Uncertainty remains today as the pages of history remain to be written for marijuana’s own repeal of prohibition that began just four years after alcohol’s was lifted.

“My concern is the young kids, the high schoolers and junior high kids.  It being more available the source being more plentiful,” said Ken McRae who says he voted against Amendment 64.  “I don’t think it’s probably any worse than alcohol.”

Hindsight is known as 20/20.  Prohibition of alcohol is considered by many to be a failure.

“It didn’t work for this too well either.  The war on drugs is a big flop,” said Mike McCarthy.

History will turn a page on January 1st.


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