Law Observance: Shall the People of the United States Uphold the Constitution?

By W. Durant C. | Go to book overview

SUCCESS IN UNDER-COVER WORK

Al Bentley, Police Officer Huntington Park, California

THE prohibition laws are among the easiest laws we have to enforce, if gone about intelligently, but other and more stringent laws are needed.

First there should be a law making the manufacture and sale of intoxicating liquor a felony, and providing a very heavy penalty of both fine and imprisonment to apply automatically on conviction, so that if the courts are not inclined to enforce prohibition they have no choice but to pronounce sentence.

The liquor traffic is conducted entirely for the profits, and as everyone engaging in it knows it is unlawful, imprisonment is the best deterrent.

There should also be a law compelling deportation of every foreign born person convicted of violation of the prohibition laws, as soon as they have served their sentence.

As the liquor business is purely commercial, the bootlegger is the logical one to work on, for he is the retail distributor, and as his profits are from his sales to the consumer he is more likely to sell to anyone. So he is easier and cheaper to catch than the runners or the moonshiners, for they have to depend on him as a distributor. The runner is not going to pull his truck up onto a vacant corner, like a fruit or melon peddler, and say "Come and get it, fellows," and the moonshiner is not going to have the public running to his still for their booze. So when you do away with the bootlegger you automatically do away with the moonshiner and the runner.

Now for enforcement, laws should be passed whereby in any state, county, or city, where the prohibition laws are not enforced, the United States government can go in and enforce the laws and compel localities to pay the costs.

-81-

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