Until Jimmy Carter legalized homebrewing in 1979 making your own beer was against the law too. It seems funny to me that some homebrewers find discussing distilling objectionable. To me it's the next step in the process. A big part of distilling is the fermentation process that comes first.
Yes distilling alcohol is illegal in the U.S. The big taboo is that the US Treasurery Department feels that ALL distilled spirits must be taxed; in other words, lost tax revenue. Are they overly concerned about lost revenue from homemade beer, mead or wine? Talking about distilling is not illegal.
There is a great deal of misinformation about distilling and distilled spirits out there; even more so than misinformation about homebrewed beer. Think about the misinformation you encounter about homebrewing, then take the stories you hear about distilling with a grain of salt. Very high quality distilled spirits can be made on a small scale. With a bit of caution, the chance of hurting oneself or others can be reduced to zero; much the same as using glass carboys for fermenting safely.
Craft distilling is taking off now like craft brewing did 20-30 years ago. That's very exciting! Home distilling is legal in some countries, including New Zealand. I think it can be legalized in the U.S. too if people make the effort to educate the public and dispel the ubiquitous myths surrounding home distilling.
Perhaps Denny is right. This may not be the right forum for discussing distillation.
Tony Ackland of New Zealand has put together an excellent home distillers’ forum at:http://www.homedistiller.org/
Another excellent forum is the Artisan Distiller at:http://www.artisan-distiller.org/