Created By: Lawman592 on February 15, 2012 Last Edited By: Lawman592 on February 23, 2012
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Dry Crusader

Someone who really hates drinking alcohol and hates other people drinking alcohol.

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Do We Have This One?? Needs a Better Title? Needs More Examples. Rolling Updates.

(Formerly The Carrie Nation.)

During its long history, alcohol has caused (and "solved") a myriad of problems. There's no dispute its consumption--especially to excess--has caused damage to countless lives and society in general. Controlling its use has been a problem since the beginning of civilization. The solution of the Dry Crusader is one of complete prohibition.

The Dry Crusader is what you get when you cross The Teetotaler with the Moral Guardians, the Principles Zealot, and (sometimes) the Well-Intentioned Extremist tropes. It's a character who believes consumption of alcohol is always evil in any amount at all times to everyone. Anyone drinking who's unfortunate enough to be drinking a glass of beer to be within the Dry Crusader's line of sight will soon be subjected to an angry harangue warning him of the spiritual, moral, and health hazards that will result with one sip of the demon rum. It goes without saying that nothing short of a total ban on alcohol will satisfy the Dry Crusader. To achieve this goal, this person on occasion is not above resorting to any means necessary.

When the Dry Crusader appears, it's often in works that are set in the United States during the 19th and early 20th century which is the time the Women's Christian Temperance Union and the Anti-Saloon League were at their peak of influence. Instances of the Dry Crusader in stories set after the repeal of Prohibition in the U.S. in 1933 are far less common. You'll still come across characters who inveigh against all consumption of alcohol but they're less likely to advocate a complete ban or subjecting bars and taverns to hatchetization to achieve their goal. Often the character will serve as a Strawman Political and usually be Played for Laughs.

The Dry Crusader is not limited to the U.S. and can also be found in stories set in Canada, Britain, and other countries that have a history of puritanism and campaigns against the consumption of alcohol.

In many ways, the Smug Straight Edge is the descendant of the Dry Crusader in that both have a tendency to act self-righteously toward and condemn those who imbibe.


Examples:

Film

Literature
  • In both the book and movie version of Elmer Gantry, the title character publicly preaches against the evils of booze. Privately, it's another story.

  • Poledra in The Malloreon series by David Eddings won't tolerate any drinking in her presence; when Belgarath tries to fill a tankard of ale around her, she takes it away and pours it on the ground. Somewhat of a subversion because her opposition has nothing to do with morals but is instead due to the fact she just can't stand the smell of alcohol.

Live-Action TV
  • Edmund's puritanical relatives, the Whiteadders, from the Blackadder II episode "Beer" (at least until the end of the episode).

  • The Kenny Rogers telemovie The Gambler: The Luck of Draw features a group of temperance crusaders who attempt to smash the beer barrels for a cowboy picnic and are almost lynched as a result.

  • In a Happy Days episode where Richie's great-uncle-for-this-episode tells the story of one of Richie's relatives, a saloon-busting DA in Prohibition-era Chicago, we see a Whole Episode Flashback starring the main characters as these other characters from the period. Mrs. C. "plays" a local version of Carrie Nation, coming into the speakeasy and trying to catch them selling alcohol so she can bust it up.

  • A sect of these appears in the Midsomer Murders episode "The Night of the Stag".

Real Life
  • Carrie Nation.
    Back in 1880, Kansas residents had voted for prohibition, but the law was largely ignored by saloonkeepers. They operated openly, but Nation would change all that. First she prayed in front of an establishment in 1890. She struck at her first saloon on June 1, 1900. Initially, she used rocks, bricks and other objects for these attacks, then turned to the hatchet. Nearly six feet tall and strapping, the determined woman closed the saloons in Medicine Lodge.

    Nation responded with alacrity to appeals from citizens of other towns to close their saloons. She entered states where liquor sales were legal. Her behavior provoked a tremendous uproar and sent her to jail repeatedly for disorderly conduct and disturbing the peace.FYI: Carrie Nation

  • Thomas Riley Marshall, who eventually became Woodrow Wilson's vice president, was an active campaigner against liquor. In his case it stemmed from being a recovering alcoholic himself.

  • The early 20th century evangelist Reverend Billy Sunday frequently preached against drinking alcohol and advocated its abolition.

  • Wayne Wheeler of the Anti-Saloon League. His efforts played a large role in the passage of Prohibition in the U.S.

Community Feedback Replies: 42
  • February 15, 2012
    animeg3282
    I'm amused but many tropers do not know anything about American history
  • February 15, 2012
    Catbert
  • February 15, 2012
    TwoGunAngel
    The Prohibitionist sounds good to me.
  • February 15, 2012
    Earnest
    As is this trope is about a nation, so it may be more appropriate to us, Prohibitionist Nation or Prohibitionist Regime.
  • February 15, 2012
    LarryD
    FYI: Carrie Nation Her first husband was an alcoholic (she didn't know that when she married him).

    "Back in 1880, Kansas residents had voted for prohibition, but the law was largely ignored by saloonkeepers. They operated openly, but Nation would change all that. First she prayed in front of an establishment in 1890. She struck at her first saloon on June 1, 1900. Initially, she used rocks, bricks and other objects for these attacks, then turned to the hatchet. Nearly six feet tall and strapping, the determined woman closed the saloons in Medicine Lodge.

    Nation responded with alacrity to appeals from citizens of other towns to close their saloons. She entered states where liquor sales were legal. Her behavior provoked a tremendous uproar and sent her to jail repeatedly for disorderly conduct and disturbing the peace. Later, fines were paid by the sale of pewter hatchet pins. Nation wielded her voice as effectively as her hatchet, eloquently speaking her mind and inspiring others on numerous occasions. Even sworn enemies acknowledged her success with compelling enforcement of prohibition laws and spreading her message."
  • February 15, 2012
    Lawman592
    > Earnest:

    This trope is about characters who are not always American. I'll add more to it later.
  • February 15, 2012
    condottiera
    The Teetotaler already exists as a trope, which is someone who doesn't drink. Hating people who do drink or wanting to ban alcohol a la the Temperance Movement would have to be a subtrope of that, but I don't think this is different enough to qualify.
  • February 15, 2012
    Treblain
    I know who Carrie Nation is, and I always appreciate a good historical reference, but there's no way you're going to get to launch with that name. How about Temperance Zealot? I'd avoid having Prohibition in the name because that's also a very specific term in the context, and it would be used improperly since there's a difference between temperance (the widespread, decades-long movement against alcohol consumption) and Prohibition (the term for the specific ban in 1920s America).

    Also, some examples would be good. Three Rules Of Three.
  • February 15, 2012
    69BookWorM69
    Seconding Temperance Zealot.

    I'd still list Carrie Nation as a Real Life example, in your place OP.
  • February 15, 2012
    randomsurfer
    A Happy Days episode where Richie's great-uncle-for-this-episode (there must be a trope for that) tells the story of one of Richie's relatives, a saloon-busting DA in Prohibition-era Chicago and we see a Whole Episode Flashback starring the main characters as these other characters (trope currently on ykttw). Mrs. C. "plays" a local version of Carrie Nation, coming into the speakeasy and trying to catch them selling alcohol so she can bust it up.
  • February 15, 2012
    Ryusui
    Temperance Zealot is good, bit I like The Prohibitionist better.
  • February 16, 2012
    oztrickster
    Prohibition is a fairly well known time, even outside America, something named along that line would clarify things more than Temperance Zealot.
  • February 16, 2012
    Tambov333
    Mikhail Gorbachev.
  • February 16, 2012
    Antigone3
    Another vote for The Prohibitionist
  • February 16, 2012
    Catbert
  • February 16, 2012
    Lawman592
    For another title, how about Anti Alcohol Advocate?

    Booze Basher?

    Liquor Restrictor?
  • February 16, 2012
    oztrickster
    Another vote for The Prohibitionist
  • February 16, 2012
    foxley
    • A group of these appear in the telemovie The Gambler: The Luck of Draw and are nearly lynched when they attempt to smash the beer barrels at a picnic full of cowboys.
  • February 16, 2012
    Lumpenprole
    Mikhail Gorbechev tried to stem the rising tide of alcoholism in the 1980s Soviet Union by restricting sales of alcohol. It turned out that production and sales of alcohol was the only growth industry left in the USSR.
  • February 17, 2012
    foxley
    The Prohibitionist could refer to someone who wants to ban anything, not spefically alcohol. I think Temperance Zealot gets the point across better.
  • February 17, 2012
    oztrickster
    Temperance just means restraint, and it being used in relation to alcohol isn't very well known outside America.
  • February 17, 2012
    foxley
    By the same token, prohibition just means ban.
  • February 17, 2012
    peccantis
    Well why not Alcohol Prohibitionist then?
  • February 17, 2012
    TBeholder
    @animeg3282 What's surprising? There won't be much flamewa... er, debates on the "war on drugs" and so on otherwise, now would there? =)
  • February 17, 2012
    Lawman592
    Another suggested title: Dry Crusader.
  • February 18, 2012
    fulltimeD
    Yet another vote for The Prohibitionist
  • February 18, 2012
    Lawman592
    Another title suggestion: John Barleycorn Must Die. (However, that might be too vague.)
  • February 19, 2012
    IronLion
    If it's called The Prohibitionist then its scope should be wider than just alcohol.
  • February 19, 2012
    zequist
    Literature Example: Poledra in The Malloreon series by David Eddings won't tolerate any drinking in her presence; when Belgarath tries to fill a tankard of ale around her, she takes it away and pours it on the ground. Her opposition has nothing to do with morals, she just can't stand the smell of alcohol.
  • February 19, 2012
    Sackett
  • February 20, 2012
    Lawman592
    There's already The Teetotaler trope and it wouldn't exactly fit here. The Teetotaler is mostly someone who avoids alcohol. The Carrie Nation (or whatever new name that replaces this) goes beyond being a mere Teetotaler and instead militantly advocates for the abolition of all alcoholic beverages from society.
  • February 20, 2012
    Lawman592
    I've changed the name to The Dry Crusader.
  • February 20, 2012
    pawsplay
    The article is not complete without a use of the phrase "Hatchetation."

    Also tossing out Teetotal War is a possible name.
  • February 20, 2012
    foxley

    I like The Dry Crusader as a title.
  • February 21, 2012
    Madcapunlimited
    Temperance Zealot... like it.

    If you're expanding this beyond alcohol there is already a name for it in pop culture: Drug Warrior.
  • February 22, 2012
    TrustBen
    I like Temperance Zealot too.

    • Thomas Riley Marshall, who eventually became Woodrow Wilson's vice president, was an active campaigner against liquor. In his case it stemmed from being a recovering alcoholic himself.
  • February 22, 2012
    Madcapunlimited
    Wow-- that kind of gets me wondering if the whole "I drank/did drugs and lost control/developed an addiction and therefore nobody else can control themselves" type of character might be its own trope or subtrope... you certainly see it plenty often.
  • February 22, 2012
    Antigone3
    I like the new description, but you might want to define "hatchetation" in a hottip -- I know what it means, but we can't assume everyone on the site has watched Ken Burns' "Prohibition".

    @Madcapunlimited: good question. A lot of the Prohibition activists in the US were dry from the start, but I know there were some anti-booze speakers who were reformed drunkards (to use the term of the time).
  • February 22, 2012
    Lawman592
    @Madcapunlimited: that type of character is covered in the Smug Straight Edge trope.
  • February 22, 2012
    Madcapunlimited
    @Lawman592-- I suppose it is covered, though not particularly well. Esp. since that trope lists what I'm talking about as an "extreme version". Regardless, I'll shut up about it-- don't want to stray too far from the point of this :-)
  • February 22, 2012
    pawsplay
    Leading quote?

    "I felt invincible. My strength was that of a giant. God was certainly standing by me. I smashed five saloons with rocks before I ever took a hatchet." - Carrie Nation
  • February 23, 2012
    Stratadrake
    I'm going to make a unilateral tweak on the title, it is generally bad form to start a character trope with "the".
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