18th Amendment

Topics: Prohibition in the United States, Temperance movement, Eighteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution Pages: 3 (809 words) Published: May 13, 2013
Of the 27 amendments to the US constitution, only one has ever been revoked: the 18th amendment that banned the manufacturing and sale of alcohol, also known as prohibition (http://prohibition.osu.edu/why-prohibition). Previous amendments had all focused on rights to vote, slavery, and gun laws but of the 27 amendments passed, this was the first dealing with a personal concern, the beverages you drink. Suffice to say the 18th amendment was not popular with average Americans. During its 14 years in existence there was much protesting and illegal activities. So it bares the question, how did this absurd amendment get proposed, let alone passed in congress? Support for the 18th amendment arose because of patriotism in World War 1, medical concerns surrounding alcohol, and pressures from driving forces of the anti saloon league.

Its said that “the First World War had a tremendous influence upon prohibition” and that “most blame the First World War” for the legislation being passed (http://schreibe.wordpress.com/2010/02/09/the-five-causes-of-prohibition/ ). During the hard times of World War 1 almost all fit American men and women joined the war overseas, mostly as either soldiers or nurses. Everyone who wasn’t directly part of the war efforts helped out on the home front as much as they could by means of collecting supplies and food for the Americans who were fighting. During this time alcohol was in dire need, not for drinking, but for medical supplies. For alcohol was the leading disinfectant to prevent further infection to wounds (Disinfection, Sterilization and Preservation - Google Books.). Since alcohol was seen more as a medical necessity to treat injured soldiers then as a drink, it was highly frowned upon for men in America to get ‘drunk’ while most of the population was dying fighting for their country. Another factor to prohibition resulting from World War 1 was that Germans owned many bars and breweries in America (GCSE Why was Prohibition introduced...
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