Opposition to drunk driving in the US November 20, 2017 From One for the Road : Drunk Driving since 1900 by Barron H. Lerner: Opposition to drunk driving is as old as the automobile. In the early years of the twentieth century, state and local legislators in certain areas passed laws making impaired driving illegal. But prohibitions varied greatly. Although publicly on the record as opposed to drinking and driving, the automobile and beverage industries carefully avoided any black-and-white characterization of the problem. The suburbanization of America after World War II, followed by the development of the interstate highway system, helped to transform the automobile—and the act of driving—into a vital cultural and economic activity. The car, the “freedom machine,” became the primary mode of transportation for those in suburban or rural areas going to work, visiting friends, and most importantly for this book, going to restaurants and bars. It was one thing to leave a bar in a city and stagger home or onto a bus or subway; it was quite another to literally have “one for the road” and get into one’s car, either in an impaired or a fully inebriated state.