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Free Will and Moral Responsibility

Stupid alcohol laws give the festive season a hangover

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For many people, the festive season means an increased consumption of alcohol. Staff holiday parties, friends’ Christmas parties, and — of course — New Year’s Eve are all classic occasions to knock back a few drinks and celebrate the season. But as professor Antony Davies explains in the video below, many states have stupid alcohol laws that give the festive season a hangover, well into the New Year.

In a pre-pandemic world, we saw in Virginia, for instance, that bars were forced to end their discounted-price “happy hours” by 9 pm. Legislators intended for this rule to limit the consumption of alcohol as the night wore on, which they hoped in effect would reduce the amount of drunk driving on the roads. Though well-intended, this law actually leads people to purchase several drinks at 8:55 pm, then leave when they’re finished, increasing the amount of drunk driving. We’ve seen a similar level of incompetence applied at the onset of 2020’s coronavirus pandemic, with no sign of change in sight.

Professor Davies also runs through four other examples of counterproductive – and bizarre – Virginia alcohol laws.

“Sadly, well-intentioned laws often achieve results that are pretty dumb,” concludes Professor Davies. Stupid alcohol laws could be a great topic of conversation at your next happy hour!

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This article was originally published on the Learn Liberty blog.

This piece solely expresses the opinion of the author and not necessarily the organization as a whole. Students For Liberty is committed to facilitating a broad dialogue for liberty, representing a variety of opinions.

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