Path to Popularity of Alcohol in the U.S. • Immigration to the U.S./merging of cultures • Original Uses • - Considered a way to altered mind and become closer to sprits • Ex. In World and in Native American culture • Popular for medicinal purposes but as we know for most medicines people can very easily come to depend on them • U.S. landscape fit for producing grains rather than fruits and produce. Led to production of stronger alcohols (whiskey, rum, etc). • Poor Immigration Life – bad living conditions. Disease, death more prominent and thus the need for aid to make one feel better. • WWI and PTSD • Healthier than water and other drinks at the time. Was a normal every day every meal drink • Pastime ***All of these and more things led to an issue of Alcohol abuse.
What told us we need Prohibition? • Treatmentof women /deteriorating family life • It had become a dependency • Health affects of alcohol • Protestantism
People Act and Prohibition “the average American over 15 years old consumed nearly seven gallons of pure alcohol a year – three times as much as we drink today” • Temperance Movements - Protestant Church • Anti-Saloon League • Women’s Christian Temperance Union – beginning of women’s rights? • 18th Amendment - Piece of legislation that made it illegal to manufacture, sell, or transport “intoxicating liquors” • Volstead Act - Enforced the 18th Amendment by providing penalties for violators. Also further defined terminology.
Problems with Prohibition • Alcohol was a business and a very lucrative one at that. • Enforcement. Not good, especially in cities. Note above. • U.S. was founded on entrepreneurship and doing what you want to do without persecution. • Policy loopholes • Did not actually ban the consumption of alcohol • Allowed pharmacies to dispense it to those with ailments • Craftiness of American people • Organized crime • - Speakeasies