“Raging Bitch” beer to be served in the Supreme Court?


WARNING: Michigan Liquor Commission sez this label endangers your health, safety and general welfare.

On March 25, Flying Dog Beer filed suit in federal court over the Michigan Liquor Control Commission’s refusal to license the sale of its “Raging Bitch” IPA.  Courthouse News reports that the brewery objects on First Amendment grounds to Michigan’s nanny-state decision to ban the sale of its beer because of the name, label, and slogan.

The Commission, according to the complaint, did not object to the label as obscene.  Instead, the Commission found the “gonzo-inspired” label to be “detrimental to the public health, safety and welfare.”  You don’t have to be a constitutional scholar to see that there is no connection between this rationale and the beer’s label.

Here is where the case gets really interesting.  Flying Dog Beer brought in a big gun, Alan Gura, to argue its case.  Mr. Gura is famous for winning the “D.C. gun case” a.k.a.  District of Columbia v. Heller.  He is a talented lawyer with a great eye for cases that the Supreme Court might find appetizing.

It is way too early to tell if this case will make it that far; but it looks like Flying Dog and Mr. Gura are prepared to argue this case all the way up.

If not, the publicity from the lawsuit surely will sell more beer.  Siouxsie, for one, is definitely picking up a six-pack of this stuff.

A copy of the complaint can be found at this link.

~ by siouxsielaw on March 30, 2011.

4 Responses to ““Raging Bitch” beer to be served in the Supreme Court?”

  1. ASSUMING it goes to SCOTUS:

    One thing this Court has been very consistent on (with the exception of the poor “bong hits for Jesus” kid) is an expansion of 1st Amendment rights; up to and including old commercial speech doctrine (I may have mentioned a few times my seething disdain for First Am. Jurisprudence).

    This should be an absolute slam dunk by necessity, and from the current case law, utterly predictable.

  2. do you know if the illustration is actually by Steadman, or an imposter? just curious…

  3. In my opinion, this is something that really will not matter in the whole scheme, the name Raging Bitch is NOT offensive. I read today some lady was comparing it to the “n” word for women. WRONG, lady! Bitch is a female dog, not an offensive word to anyone but the simple minded. My sister has a bitch, by friend has a bitch and tens of thousands of people in the US have bitches. Stop the unamerican PC slurs and get a llife.

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