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History Coursework: Why Did Prohibition End?

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History Coursework: Why Did Prohibition End? In 1919 the Eighteenth Amendment to the American Constitution, banned the 'manufacture, sale or transportation of intoxicating liquors' This happened in a hope to keep America prosperous through the 'boom' of the 1920's, to keep a sober workforce amongst the country, and to set up an example to the rest of the world, that they had high moral standards and were superior. Then why was the Eighteenth Amendment withdrawn from the constitution in 1933? I am going to discuss the reasons why Prohibition ended. Although he law of Prohibition stopped the act of selling, transporting or making of alcohol, this did not stop anyone from doing exactly that. People took the law as a joke, and disrespected it greatly, a reason for the laws downfall. 'Bootleggers' made and distributed alcohol across America. 'Rum Runners' smuggled alcohol into the US, but it was not always certain where it was from and what it was. These people claimed that the alcohol was from places like Canada or Scotland, when instead the substances were things like Jamaica Ginger, Jackass Brandy or Yack Yack Bourbon, which were all dangerous. Illegal Bars were set up, or as they were known in the states as 'speakeasies' -called this because people had to be quiet in them to avoid discovery. Overall, Prohibition had not stopped anyone from getting alcohol at all. ...read more.


He was extremely famous, and even though everyone knew what he did .He was impossible to convict because of his increasing power and influence over the police. He used bribes to get what he wanted with them, which shows how corrupt the police force was, and why Prohibition was such a failure, as even the 'good guys' did not abide to the law. Breaking the law of Prohibition was more acceptable to the public as it was considered 'cleaner' than other crimes. People seemed to ignore how deadly the criminal world was, and how many deaths were occurring because of it. The biggest shake-up of the criminal world was the St Valentines Day Massacre. This was a major turning point for Prohibition, as it showed the world how low the gangsters had stooped to make money. 7 men of a rival gang to Al Capone were viscously gunned down in a horrific massacre. The next day, the Americans saw the gangsters in a new light. Still, the massacre was only a reminder of the rising amount of violence and trouble heading for America. In 1929, after the shocking events at the St Valentines Day Massacre, America was now facing some serious issues like the sudden declining, economic change. People began to sell shares rapidly in the stock market, and by October 1929, Wall Street crashed, which meant economic failure and disaster for all. ...read more.


I also believe that it is not just these reasons why Prohibition failed, but there is a more subconscious reason for it. America has always advertised itself as 'The land of the free' and has a relaxed image surrounding it. America has always been a democratic state, and gave the people freedom of speech. I believe that such a restricting law such as Prohibition gave Americans less pride and less hope in their country. Prohibition was meant to give the country a better image, but it gave America a bad image. Prohibition was also a disaster due to the grounds it was built on. Prohibition was meant for moral reasons, when really it was a way of 'keeping the Negro in place' America was still a very racist country at the time, and Prohibition would deny blacks another human right. As the law was not fair, the arguments for keeping the law fell through. Congress believed that Prohibition was the reason for the country's economy was so strong, but when the Wall Street Crash occurred, it was obvious that Prohibition was not the magic formula for success. Overall, I think that Prohibition failed mainly due to the fact that it was extremely unpopular law, and it was impossible to enforce. The law didn't work: The gangsters had too much of an influence over the police, and the law did not state it was illegal to drink alcohol. Prohibition denied people the right to freedom of speech or choice, which Americans expect and are accustomed to. By Ashley Hovell 10yk ...read more.

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