Today is the anniversary of the ratification of the 21st Amendment to the United States Constitution, overturning the 18th Amendment and giving Americans the right to manufacture, transport, purchase, and sell alcohol (again).
The 21st Amendment
Ratified December 5, 1933
Section 1. The eighteenth article of amendment to the Constitution of the United States is hereby repealed.
Section 2. The transportation or importation into any State, Territory, or possession of the United States for delivery or use there in of intoxicating liquors, in violation of the laws thereof, is hereby prohibited.
Section 3. This article shall be inoperative unless it shall have been ratified as an amendment to the Constitution by conventions in the several States, as provided in the Constitution, within seven years from the date of the submission hereof to the States by the Congress.
This is a perfect opportunity for opponents of Proposition 8 to take heed and keep the faith. While the rights protected by this article are largely different from the ones taken away by Prop. 8, the broader picture is important here: you can’t take away a right.
It is also important to remember, as King eloquently wrote, “freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor.” The most welcome consequence of the passage of Prop. 8 has been the re-birth of a queer rights movement in which youth are constitutive. History is not inevitable, but with collaborative effort, the defeat of injustice can be.