Oh holy Hannah holding her hand grenades! Quick! Pass me that beer! And the whiskey! And the bourbon! And gin, rum, brandy....hell....gimme the rubbing alcohol!
Did they really think that was a threat men were worried about? I don't want to sound sexist or superficial or anything, so, ignoring the physical attractiveness of those women, look at their expressions. Would you really want to kiss one of those sour-pusses?
I wouldn't. And I regularly kiss frogs because I heard they might turn into a princess....
Those ladies up there were believers in the temperance movement. Followers of Carrie Nation. What normal people called "Drys". The were, of course, for the banning of alcohol.
Because, silly, everyone knows alcohol was, and is, the driving force behind everything that's wrong with this world. Why, if it weren't for alcohol, there would be no war. No poverty. No suffering. No inequality. No hope for greasy, fat nerds to ever get laid....
History. Want to learn some? Too bad, you're going to anyway. Why? Because I said so. Need another reason? Too bad. Not giving you one.
Before you start freaking out, I'm not going to give you a huge history lesson. Just a small one. An interesting one. Some might even call it, an odd one. Regardless of what you call it, you will enjoy it. Or not. I guess I can't really say for sure if you'll enjoy it because I can't accurately predict your reaction to it until after you read it. And then, it wouldn't be a prediction of your reaction, more like a reaction to your reaction.
Today's history lesson is about prohibition. I'm sure none of you remember it, as it was enacted all the way back in 1920 with the ratification of the 18th amendment by 36 states. There was a segment of the population that felt the world problems, and Americas especially, could be solved if we would just sober up. So they started pushing for the banning of alcohol.
And in 1920, they succeeded. People could no longer drink.
Or, that's what people think, anyway. But contrary to popular belief, it was never illegal to drink alcohol. The 18th amendment made it illegal to produce, transport and sell alcohol. Before prohibition took effect, you could have bought up an entire warehouse of booze, and as long as you didn't move it or sell it, you could drink all you wanted.
That was intentional. It was a way of grandfathering in liquor that was purchased before prohibition kicked in. And when you see in movies all the people in a speakeasy freaking out during a raid, it was to hide the booze to keep the establishment out of trouble. The police couldn't do a thing to you for drinking the booze.
The 18th amendment was repealed by the 21st amendment in 1933. Most people think it was repealed because it didn't work. And, to a certain extent, they're right. Prohibition absolutely didn't work. In fact, it had the opposite effect of working. More alcohol was consumed during prohibition than before. It was a classic case of when you tell someone not to do something, they have to do it more.
Prohibition also caused a sharp increase in crime. It was the bootlegging of liquor that made the prominent gangsters of the 20's their main source of income. Hell, it led to the Kennedys political dynasty! (Old Joe Kennedy was a bootlegger)
But it wasn't the failure of prohibition that ultimately led to it's downfall. It was a combination of two different things. The usurpation of the temperance movement and the depression.
After prohibition was passed, the temperance movement didn't die. They stuck around, trying to show people all the good that was coming out of Americas being dry. And for the first few years, most of America was willing to go along with them. (but only because they could still get their booze) In the mid 20's, a new group became vocal inside the temperance movement: fundamental christians.
The original leaders of the movement were christian. But, as anyone who has any experience with the religion, fundamental christianity is not anything like regular christianity. As time went on, they took power away from the original leaders of the movement and took it as their own. Temperance became less "Look at the benefits of not drinking" and more "Do as we say or burn in hell!".
This had the effect of alienating most of the supporters of the movement. So much so that by the time the 21st amendment was passed, some of the leaders that pushed for the 18th amendment began pushing for it's repeal, just so they could buy booze and shut out the fundamentalist ravings. (ok...maybe not...)
Another big reason for the repeal was the depression. Since 1929, millions of people were out of work. Soup kitchens, bread lines, extreme poverty. Something needed to be done. In fact, the president was doing something. Herbert Hoover was putting into motion the programs that would eventually lessen the depression. (FDR gets credit for them, but most of his 'New Deal' was begun before he even took office.)
Franklin Delano Roosevelt, cousin of that former president, Teddy, thought he knew the perfect way to pull America out of the depression: Booze.
If prohibition was repealed, think of al the jobs that could be created by the production and distribution of liquor. Jobs that the country sorely needed! So FDR make the repeal of the 18th amendment one of his main campaign strategies. And, it worked.
s soon as he was elected and took office, he had congress pass the 21st amendment and send it off for ratification. And in December of 1933, the 36th state ratified it, officially repealing prohibition.
But the main point of this little history lesson was.......no matter what anyone tries to tell you, the drinking of alcohol was never made illegal by prohibition.