The 18th Amendment to the Constitution passed in 1919, and commonly called Prohibition, made it illegal to produce, transport and sell alcohol in the US. Its purpose was to deal with crime but it resulted instead in a decade which was one of the most corrupt in our history, "The Roaring Twenties". Americans did not stop drinking over the following thirteen years because of this law; they went underground to seek their entertainment. refreshments and socialization. Claudescent bars and nightclubs ("Speakeasies") were the rage of society. The patrons of the Speakeasies did not consider themselves violating the law (i.e. as being criminals). They saw a law that did not work. That law that did not work was finally repealed in 1933.
It seems that each decade in history brings its own laws that do not work.
Prohibition today denies unskilled Mexican workers access to this country and to the jobs that need fulfillment. The prohibition does not work. The migrants come in anyway, often with peril to their lives, to fill these jobs. They do not consider themselves violating the law (i.e. as being criminals). They see a law that does not work. There is no legal way by which an unskilled Mexican worker can enter this country to find a job. There should be a way. As President Bush says: "When we find a willing employer and a willing worker, we ought to match the two."
Richard E. Baer
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