The Effects of the Eighteenth Amendment

The eighteenth amendment created a period of prohibition that produced several effects. Some of which were positive, such as the savings of workers and productivity among workers increased. The negative effects though, outweighed the positive. The citizens despised the government for making a law they thought violated their rights. In retaliation, the citizens never stopped drinking, they just hid their new crime from government officials. The citizens created secret bars called speakeasies and created bootleg alcohol in their homes within bathrooms. The negative effects produced more problems than the positive effects solved.

The government did not have a right to pass this law. I agree with the citizens views of the law impeding on their rights. The was too much bad that happened as a result of the law, such as many citizens breaking the law and the rising of Al Capone. The worst product of the prohibition was Al Capone because of the way he ruled the streets with an iron fist. He wreaked havoc and created turmoil. If there was no prohibition, Capone would not have risen to power so quickly or even at all.

What the government should’ve done, instead of outright banning the substance, is to put stronger restrictions into play. They did put a restriction on the beverage but it was impossible to meet and still keep the public happy. With the average beer now having an alcohol percentage of four to six, point five percent was an unreasonable requirement. The government’s job is to maintain public order and keep its citizens safe and by creating this law, they failed to do both.

With the United States being a country in which your voice should always be heard and listened to, this amendment was created by tuning out the public’s wants. The government paid for its failure but not before some citizens were caught in the crossfire. The government realized its mistake and set right its wrong by creating the twenty first amendment. The government should forever look at this as a reminder to keep the public happy and maintain the order.

Keene, Jennifer D., et al. Visions of America: a History of the United States. Pearson, 2017

Neale, April. “Drinks, Crime and Prohibition Examines Alcohol Ban’s Huge Impact on American History.” Monsters and Critics, Monsters and Critics, 10 May 2018,

7 thoughts on “The Effects of the Eighteenth Amendment

  1. I agree, having a point five alcohol percent is very unreasonable. The government really could have changed a lot of past history if they made point five higher. How many people actually helped bootleg and made their own alcohol in their bathrooms?

  2. I completely agree that it was impending on citizens rights. Banning liquor only caused more issues such as the creation of organized crime. As you said, the prohibition played a big part in the rise of Al Capone. All the ban did was create a roadblock that people would still jump over to get their liquor fix. Only now, it was causing them to risk more. As I mentioned in my post, I was shocked to learn 10,000 people died during this time from consumption of wood alcohol. This could have been avoided if alcohol had continued to be regulated by manufacturers.

  3. I agree the government should have put restrictions on alcohol instead of outright banning it but they have to be realistic restrictions. Point five percent is a very unrealistic restriction to accomplish, they should have decreased the alcohol percent but not to that extent.

  4. I totally agree with your viewpoints about Prohibition, instead of banning it, they should’ve place restrictions. The government should learn from this and prioritize keeping their citizens content because if not, there will automatically be issues, since our country stresses freedom of speech. The negatives outweighed the positives because the society wasn’t happy with the 18th amendment, which caused major issues, such as Al Capone. Great blog, it was informing and well-organized.

  5. I really like your point about starting with restrictions instead of going straight to banning alcohol. If they would’ve done that back then it may have changed the regulations on alcohol now and also would’ve kept crime down during this time.

  6. It is very interesting to me that the eighteenth amendment was repealed. I agree that the amendment did more harm than good, which Is why the repeal was a great idea. It intrigued me because the eighteenth amendment is the only amendment to be repealed from the constitution. This amendment was only in effect for about 13 years before it was removed. The eighteenth amendment did the opposite of everything it was supposed to, which really makes me wonder why it stayed in the constitution for 13 years.

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