In the US this word is most closely associated with one person, Carry Nation. She led the drive against alcohol and tobacco for many years. Some loved her as a saint and others (like my Grandmother) cursed her as a demon.
She cloaked her hatred in the words of the Bible
and twisted everything and everyone that came hear her.
Her efforts resulted in a Constitutional Amendment prohibiting the manufacture, distribution, and sale of alcohol in the US. This provided a major source of funds for organized crime and a breakdown in respect for the law that still continues to this day. Many if not most people ignored the law, all looked away, speakeasies flourished. (There was even a bootlegger operating from an office in the US Capital building.) When it was repealed tremendous damage had been done to both the economy and the spirit of the country.
Perhaps with a hundred years between the acts and now she can be viewed as a tragic figure worthy of pity. I do not think so.
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