With permission, I am going to post an email that I received today. I was blind copied when Rev. Prentiss emailed this to Richard Laird, now famous for his praise of Prohibition. Rev. Prentiss currently lives in California, but he has family in Alabama that he still visits, and thus he would like to see The Gourmet Beer Bill succeed. In his email he included the name and address of the church where he works, but I am editing that out of this post as his church has no official position on Free The Hops and we don’t want to imply that they do.
Dear Rep Laird, I am a native Alabamian and have been following the debate in Alabama regarding Gourmet Beer. I am not writing to try and persuade you to change your position, but after listening to a recording of your remarks on the floor in opposition to this bill, I do ask, as a Pastor, that you would refrain from misusing the Bible to support your opposition to this Bill.
Contrary to your remarks on the floor, the Bible is NOT in opposition to alcohol any more than it is in opposition to money, food, or sex – all of which have proper and improper uses. I know that you feel that your opposition to this bill is indeed a righteous cause, but equating Prohibition with biblical law as you do is a misappropriation of God’s word. Certainly, if you claim to be a Christian, the Bible should inform your public policy positions, but when you choose to speak for God in ways that he has not spoken, you are violating the 3rd Commandment and are undermining the Bible’s authority.
If you think that you should oppose this bill, then do so, but I implore you not to manipulate Scripture to support your position. And, incidentally, if you oppose this bill for moral reasons, you should also begin a moral crusade to outlaw wine and all forms of hard liquor on the same grounds.
-rev. brian prentiss
Associate Pastor — [name omitted] Presbyterian Church