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Prohibition, Speech Example

Pages: 1

Words: 351

Speech

Can you imagine what it would be like if the government suddenly made smoking illegal? Many people would be upset. Even though they know smoking is not healthy for them, many of them would find ways to still continue this habit. Some people may even find a way to profit off making and selling cigarettes to those willing to break the law. This is similar to what happened during Prohibition in the United States. Many people were forced to suddenly stop drinking alcohol in 1920 because many religious groups thought that this would increase the morality of the public. Citizens were rightfully annoyed and couldn’t do much to reverse this legislation, so they simply continued their habits by avoiding the watch of the law.

Under the Volstead Act, the ownership and consumption of alcohol was made illegal. As a result, many people were forced to take their drinking underground and bootleggers, those who participated in the illegal production of alcohol, profited significantly. Speakeasies were places that people could go to have a drink and party, although this had to be done under great secrecy. People required passwords to enter these establishments and many of these places had a cover-up system in place to hide their actions if the police were to arrive.

Since Prohibition led to an increase in organized crime, contributing to greater violence than alcohol had alone, this legislation began to decline around 1929. After the beginning of the Great Depression, its enforcement had completely declined. This shows that Prohibition was always doomed for failure. No one listened to or wanted this law, so they simply ignored it. This demonstrates that Prohibition is one of the most useless pieces of legislation in all history.

Works Cited

Hopkins, Richard J. The Prohibition and Crime. The North American Review 222.828(1925): 40-44.

Rumbarger; John J. Profits, Power, and Prohibition: Alcohol Reform and the Industrializing of America, 1800–1930. State University of New York Press, 1989.

Timberlake, James. Prohibition and the Progressive Movement, 1900–1920. Harvard University Press, 1963.

Welskopp, Thomas. Bottom of the barrel: The US brewing industry and saloon culture before and during National Prohibition, 1900–1933. Behemoth: A Journal on Civilisation 6.1(2013): 27-54.

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