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Prohibition was doomed a failure from the start - agree or disagree

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Unit 2: Prohibition Prohibition: was the ban on the manufacturing, sale or transportation of alcohol during the period of prohibition, 1919-1933. Speakeasies: were bars in the cities which sold alcohol on demand illegally. A lot these needed a password to get in. Clubs or bars such as these were set up illegally during the prohibition. Bootlegger: was a person who illegally transported alcohol to and fro various places, during the period of prohibition, which lasted 14 years. There were many arguments used to persuade Americans to support the prohibition campaign. Each of the sources 1-7 clearly illustrate the negative side of drinking, supporting my point backed by the various sources. Source 1 portrays a drunken man as being unpatriotic because of World War 1 in Europe, money was owed to America. Many immigrants had migrated to America and set up businesses such as bars and saloons. So when an American went to, say a German owned bar it was seen as unpatriotic for that reason. Source 2 is from an Anti-saloon League pamphlet. On the pamphlet it clearly states that drinking alcohol is un-American, pro-German, crime-producing, food wasting, youth corrupting, home wrecking and treasonable. Source 3 describes the effects or alcohol. Source 4 illustrates a picture of beer barrels labelled with delirium, tremens', cholera, collapse, murder and fever clearly indicating what alcohol can do to you. Source 5 is from a sermon stating that the curse of the almighty God is on the saloon. Source 6 illustrates a young man spending his weekly wages in a bar while a picture in the bottom left hand corner of source 6 pictures his whole family starving. ...read more.


As the sources are from the same category of people, the popularity of gangsters like Al Capone in American society cannot be trusted even if I wanted to there is too much evidence pointing to the fact that he was master criminal within other sources such as source L. From my point of view, I feel that the passing of the prohibition could've in fact worked. As you can see source F clearly portrays the strong-willed determination from John F. Kramer the first prohibition commissioner commenting on the work of the prohibition agents. If every other prohibition agent was as strong-willed as John F. Kramer the passing of the prohibition would've have most certainly have worked. However, most law-enforcing agents had given onto corruption and bribery, which can back up my point and can be supported by source 10. Regardless of what I've just said the reliability of source 10 is poor in my opinion because E. Mandeville is specifically talking about Detroit and Detroit only making the source unreliable. In the 19th century, there was a very strong temperance movement in rural areas of America suggesting great support for prohibition. Members of the temperance movements agreed not to drink alcohol and also campaigned to others to give up alcohol. Most members of the temperance movement were devout Christians who saw what damage alcohol did to family life; they wanted to stop that damage. In the 19th century the two main movements were the Anti-Saloon League and the N.W.C.T.U. Sources 1-7 overall, indicate very strong support for prohibition. ...read more.


He was eventually arrested due to tax evasion. The fact that prohibition was passed during the roaring twenties seems to me the whole reason why prohibition failed. It was a great time; during the twenties entertainment blossomed, workers had more disposable income. A lot of this spare time and money was channelled into entertainment and then came the prohibition and took it all away. No wonder people continued to drink and visit speakeasies. In my opinion if the prohibition was passed at a different time, Prohibition would've most certainly had a greater chance of succeeded. Geographical factors as to why the prohibition failed needs to be considered. The Prohibition Bureau initially employed 1500 agents to cover a staggering 24 square miles each. Bootleggers find it extremely easy to dodge agents covering such a large area. The huge lake between the USA and Canada meant that as soon as it froze over illegal alcohol could be easily transported due to famous bootleggers such as Bill McCoy where you get the phrase the real McCoy. Alcohol was easily redirected avoiding agents. Geographical factors nonetheless worked against the prohibition. The judicianal system failed the prohibition in a number of ways. Many juries in the prohibition case were lenient because they were breaking the law themselves. One jury in San Francisco was found drinking the evidence. The judicianal system was however not entirely to blame, due to gangsters it was difficult to bring witnesses to trial, because they were usually murdered and the case would collapse. In conclusion, the statement that the prohibition was doomed a failure from the start, is a statement I have to agree with. Mainly due to the fact that there was a lot more factors working against prohibition than for prohibition. ...read more.

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