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Moral Minorities and the Making of American Democracy$
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Kyle G. Volk

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780199371914

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199371914.001.0001

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Making Democracy Safe for Minorities

(p.206) Epilogue
Moral Minorities and the Making of American Democracy

Kyle G. Volk

Oxford University Press

The epilogue explores the legacy of the moral minorities of the mid-nineteenth century for the subsequent history of democracy and minority rights. It begins with the victories of gay-rights activists before the US Supreme Court in 2013 and emphasizes the similarities between their ideas and modes of minority-rights activism and what opponents of liquor, Sabbath, and race regulations had pioneered before the Civil War. The epilogue shows that issues of race, religion, and alcohol continued to spur moral conflict and minority-rights activism in the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries. It concludes by suggesting that these ongoing struggles greatly influenced the operation of democracy in the United States and beyond.

Keywords:   gay rights, gay marriage, civil rights movement, National Equal Rights League, National Liberal League, liquor dealers, Prohibition, Sunday laws, religious freedom, minority rights

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