The ugliest side of (alcohol) prohibition

Although mostly forgotten today, the “chemist’s war of Prohibition” remains one of the strangest and most deadly decisions in American law-enforcement history. As one of its most outspoken opponents, Charles Norris, the chief medical examiner of New York City during the 1920s, liked to say, it was “our national experiment in extermination.” Poisonous alcohol still kills—16 people died just this month after drinking lethal booze in Indonesia, where bootleggers make their own brews to avoid steep taxes—but that’s due to unscrupulous businessmen rather than government order.

via Slate: The little-told story of how the U.S. government poisoned alcohol during Prohibition with deadly consequences.

Related reading:

1. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prohibition_in_the_United_States
2. http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v463/n7279/full/463299a.html

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