We like to think we live in an enlightened era, but even modern history keeps reminding us that a rigid and intolerant side of human nature lies just beneath the surface.
It is ironic that Prohibition, and a corresponding amendment to the U.S. Constitution were largely driven by women newly empowered with the right to vote. Temperance, Christian temperance no less, as if those taking their liquid solace, the only safe source of fluids for millenia, were the raging ones. Prohibition swept through the English-speaking world, the new industrial world like a viral passion. It was a return to the simple certainty of Calvinistic totalitarianism, a siren song all to frequently heard.
A century behind us now, we look back in bewilderment, as we do the witch trials, but the scarlet letter remains with us. We have moved from temperance to temperature and found a new carbon compound to demonize. The science is settled, there is certainty, with no room for disagreement except from the ignorant or evil. We, the elect, have heard the word of God and will bestow the truth upon you. Yet again.
Never mind the atmosphere which should be warming has not been warming, and the oceans which should not be warming have been warming (so far). Laws must be written. The certainty of good and evil, the certainty that our lifestyle is evil, has swept the industrial world. Again.
So drink your wine with temperance. Temperature will temper. Future generations will look back in bewilderment, even as they must stare down their own demons.