- The Washington Times - Thursday, May 19, 2016

Inspired by its fight with a Michigan state alcohol regulator, Maryland’s Flying Dog microbrewery is getting ready to launch The 1st Amendment Society on May 31 with the $40,000 in damages it received in federal court, the Baltimore Sun reported Tuesday afternoon.

Flying Dog Brewery owners in Frederick, Maryland, have slated the event to dovetail with “SAVOR: An American Craft Beer & Food Experience, a weeklong beer-and-food event in D.C.,” the newspaper said.

“Civil liberties are incredibly important to us,” Society director Erin Weston told the Baltimore Sun. “We pursued this case against the state of Michigan based primarily on principle over anything else.”

Although Flying Dog Brewery won a regulatory victory five years ago when the Michigan Liquor Control Commission reversed its earlier refusal to permit “Raging Bitch IPA” to sell in the state, the beer maker fought on in federal court to set a legal precedent.

“Our lawsuit forced the Liquor Commissioners to see at least some of the light. But the litigation won’t end until the Commissioners accept responsibility for the damage they’ve caused by violating the First Amendment,” Alan Gura, an attorney for Flying Dog Brewery, promised at the time.

“We were like, ‘OK, thanks, but that’s actually not the point,’ ” Ms. Weston told the Baltimore Sun. “The point is we wanted somebody to make the call that these five commissioners and their arbitrary decision was unconstitutional.”

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