Analyze the Arguments for and Against the Restriction of the Sale of Gin in Eighteenth Century England, and Assess the Degree to Which the Issues of the Debate Were Reflected in the Following Excerpt from the Gin Act of 1751.

In eighteenth century England, controversy was engendered by the different restrictions to the gin trade by the Gin Act of 1751. The country was split because of the taking of sides that the act caused. Many people, such as the religious and the advocates of temperance, were in favor of the new restrictions. On the other hand, those who gained from the gin trade, including landowners, were against the act and the loss it could cause them.
Before the publication of the 1751 act, various groups of people stated their case for why the sales of gin should

have been limited. In Distilled Liquors: the Bane of the Nation, the author clearly displayed his contempt for gin drinkers

and for the consequences of drinking gin. He saw the vice as destructive and a waste of money. In agreement,

documents 7 and 9 excerpt speeches made to Parliament concerning the repercussions of drinking gin in excess. It was

said that binge drinking resulted in immorality, disease, and infatuation. Also, in attempt to persuade Parliament, both

petitions mentioned that excessive drinking could render the King's subjects useless in labor or childbirth, which would

needless to say be a problem for the King and for the nation. The satirical artist William Hogarth published prints to warn

the people of these very consequences; he displayed that the effects of drinking gin, a harder liquor, were gruesome in

contrast to the lesser effects of drinking beer, which was not commonly seen as an evil. On a different end of the

spectrum, the Methodist evangelist John Wesley described that one could not be transformed spiritually if they did not

give up their evil desires such as drunkenness. Though this was not specifically said to make an argument against the gin

trade, and was actually most likely an effort to raise awareness of conversion to Methodism, it nevertheless complied

with debates in favor of restricting the gin trade. The overall opinion was...