What the lessons of 18th, 19th Amendments mean for today
In her excellent column on finding hope in historical thinking, Patty Limerick expressed a wish to hear from readers with thoughts on the subject. Here’s one:
In 1919, the U.S. adopted the 18th Amendment, launching Prohibition; in 1920 came the 19th Amendment and women’s suffrage. The drive for the latter amendment suffered many attacks blaming women for having forced Prohibition, suggesting that many more problems might arise if women could vote for themselves, rather than just pressuring their husbands on issues. Despite such alarmism, suffrage was approved, as the great majority of thinking persons understood that, though Prohibition might have been partially at fault for increased crime, women were not the trigger point of that issue.
So when the 18th Amendment was repealed in 1933, there was no active drive to repeal the 19th Amendment. Perhaps a larger percentage of Americans can again learn to recognize that one should never try to end one problem by also canceling an unrelated good.