IF BY WHISKEY
This is a speech written by Nosh S. “Soggy” Sweat, Jr and delivered in 1952 to the Mississippi legislature during debate on whether that state should prohibit or legalize alcoholic beverages. It is our favorite treatise on the subject.
If By Whiskey
“If when you say whiskey you mean the devil’s brew, the poison scourge, the bloody monster that defiles innocence, dethrones reason, destroys the home, creates misery and poverty, yea, literally takes the bread from the mouths of little children; if you mean the evil drink that topples the Christian man and woman from the pinnacle of righteous, gracious living into the bottomless pit of degradation and despair and shame and helplessness and hopelessness, then certainly I am against it.
If when you say whiskey you mean the oil of conversation, the philosophic wine, the ale that is consumed when good fellows get together, that puts a song in their hearts and laughter on their lips, and the warm glow of contentment in the eyes; if you mean Christmas cheer; if you mean the stimulating drink that puts the spring in the old gentleman’s step on a frosty, crispy morning; if you mean the drink which enables a man to magnify his joy and his happiness and to forget if only for a little while life’s great tragedies and heartaches and sorrows; if you mean that drink, the sale of which pours into our treasuries untold millions of dollars which are used to provide tender care for our little crippled children, our blind, our deaf and dumb, our pitiful aged and infirm,; to build highways and hospitals and schools then certainly I am for it.”