Sheldon Richman on Arkansas' Issue 4, Whether to End Prohibition


Arkansas liquor store

After national Prohibition ended in 1933, the Arkansas General Assembly passed a law permitting counties to go "dry," that is, to prohibit the manufacture and sale of alcoholic beverages. Even within "wet" counties, individual communities can vote to be "dry." As of today, 37 of 75 Arkansas counties are "dry," the rest being "wet" or mixed, which means communities within a "wet" county have voted to go "dry." Other counties offer a "club" exemption that allows restaurants to serve alcohol, creating a new category, "damp." But on Tuesday, writes Arkansas resident Sheldon Richman, voters will have a chance to reject prohibition and support individual rights when they vote on Issue 4.