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According to Peck (11), prohibition is the process of prohibiting the production, transportation, and sale of alcoholic beverages to the general public. It alludes to a period in history when alcohol control was forbidden. Prohibition was a national legal prohibition on the sale, manufacturing, importation, and transportation of alcoholic beverages in the United States. It was a movement initiated by social Progressives in the Autonomous and Democrat factions, and it was coordinated by the Anti-Saloon League and the Female Christian Temperance Union (Lerner 22). The National Prohibition of alcohol was established from 1920 to 1933 to reduce crime, corruption, reduce misconducts like drunk driving, and improve the health standards of individuals in America (Okrent 10). Several researchers indicated in their findings that the prohibition was a total failure because levels of alcohol consumption increased the number of road accidents. Additionally, individual organizations like Al Capone did not pay tax to the government thus continued producing alcohol within the community (Okrent 12). The licensed bars became unlawful speakeasies, and several common people took advantage of the increased sales price of prohibited booze by surreptitiously producing booze in their specific bathtubs (Lerner 22).
Similarly, Thorton (1) explained in his article that a decrease in alcohol consumption did not make the act a success, and controlling alcohol intake was not managed by prohibition. The general consequences of social consequences of Prohibition should be considered and not the actual control. According to Okrent (23) noted that prohibition had prevalent effects on all levels of alcohol invention, distribution, and utilization.
A major problem that emerges from alcoholism is drunk driving. For example, in 1980 drunk driving caused sixty percent of deaths in America in the 1930s(Lerner 22). The incident motivated the government to establish a law that prohibited drunk driving. This law was not very effective because it did not describe the limits of drinking and driving (Okrent 23). Therefore, people continued taking a lot of alcohol and driving leading to server deaths. To control it that government started legalized quantity specific law Lerner (24), For instance, they used breathalyzer test to determine levels of alcohol in an individual's body.
Burns (20) explained that the government specified the level counts as the highest point for wrong offenses. For instance, they accepted a limit of .15 in the blood in 1910. Although, the number of drunk driving reduced during this time, it was still a significant problem in the society, and the government made administrative laws that made the rule strict for drunk driving. For example, any accident caused by drunk driving could make one get the suspension from driving in America.
Mothers against drunk driving and students against drunk driving developed a more active approach to drunk driving to curb the epidemic and the increased rates of mortality. These groups influenced the legislation as reducing the legal blood level and breaking the law leads to driving suspension (Okrent 24). Additionally, the enactment of the minimum 21-age requirement made a significant effect on drunk driving. According to this law, all minors and individuals below twenty-one years were not allowed to buy alcohol consume or possess it. Most highways are also government properties (Okrent 25). The authority is responsible for the distribution of funds for highway construction and upkeeps to every state. In case, the state does not accept the 21 and above rule, the regime will refuse to fund highway construction. Since the minimum 21 years drinking age was passed, the level of drunk driving has reduced among the teenagers. It also caused a meaningful reduction in drunk driving among the citizens. Youthful people are known to be reckless drivers due to lack of experience, and they were prohibited from drinking alcohol to gain experience in driving (Okrent 25).
The proscription on alcohol was canceled in the U.S. in 1933, initiating an even superior sense of necessity among community health officers and engineers who were anxious about drunk driving. Most people were dying through road accidents because of drunk driving (Okrent 25). For instance, In Los Angeles, government officials noted that there was an increase in drunk driving harms and deaths. Similarly, cities like Chicago deaths caused by drunk driving rose in 1934.
Blumenthal (11) noted in his article that societal opposition to the ban started even before the Volstead Law was passed, particularly among employment unions, but planned opposition remained minor and divided until 1926. The Association against the Prohibition Amendment repelled against this opposition and provided support for the ban in the country (Okrent 26). In addition to this, the Great Depression provided the required framework for repeal of Prohibition. For example, supporters of the ban had long maintained that prohibition of alcohol would certify prosperity and encourage law and order.
Similarly, the Depression motivated the elite to support prohibition, and prohibition of alcohol had gained support from the elites because they assumed that it would increase discipline among the employees, productivities within an organization and reduction of drunk driving. The initial laws stated that a driver was not allowed to drive while intoxicated(Okrent 27). Therefore, the laws started getting stick in the early 1970s because the pressure from groups influenced the amendments of laws as well as enforcements by the police departments. In addition to this, the Automatic license suspension regulations were also approved across the state and were used to suspend drivers who failed the breath test.
The rich and the wealthy members of the community supported the prohibition because they wanted to improve morality, and to show that the government was taking part in controlling alcohol consumption among its subjects(Okrent 28). However, prohibition did not control the consumption of alcohol. People could easily get alcohol, and increased production was observed in most of the country(Okrent 29). For example, those Americans that championed the law of ban argued that if consumption of alcohol were not permitted, then Americans would not take a lot of alcohol. However, the law only worked for one year and collapsed.
The consequences of prohibition are immense because instead of controlling the consumption it contributed to a lot of production, sales, and people. Consequently, there was intensification in driving under the influence of alcohol, immorality, crime, prostitution among others. Strict laws should be implemented to control accidents caused by drinking and driving. The essay explained that there was a slight increase in the occurrence of drunk driving or the damages or mortalities related to it, similarly, these incidents were very common among children who were underage drinkers. The adult drinkers also consumed a lot of booze and experienced many road accidents.
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Peck, Garrett. Prohibition in Washington, D.C.: How Dry We Weren't. Charleston, SC: The
History Press. 2011. Print.
Burns, Eric. The Spirits of America: A Social History of Alcohol. Philadelphia: Temple
University Press. 2003. Print.
Blumenthal, Karen. Bootleg: Murder, Moonshine, and the Lawless Years of Prohibition. New
York: Roaring Brook Press. 2011. Print.
Thorton, Mark. 'Policy Analysis: Alcohol Prohibition Was a Failure.' July 17, 1991. Online.
Netscape. 23 April 1998.
Lerner Michael. Dry Manhattan: Prohibition in New York City. Cambridge, MA: Harvard
University Press. 2007. Print.
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