The Eighteenth Amendment prohibited liquor with the exception of the use of liquor for religious purposes. As a result, it became difficult to consume let alone obtain alcohol at the time. Organized crime in the country became prevalent as people began to obtain alcohol illegally and as people began to organize themselves for alcohol trade and sales despite the increasing pressure brought forth by the government. Corruption in several government agencies became prevalent as people were tempted to bribe government officials in order to obtain alcohol with their approval.
The Amendment’s impact on contemporary society is that it gave the government a learning lesson with regard to unpopular legislations in the face of the demands of the public. Today, the effects of the Eighteenth Amendment can no longer be observed as the American public is now allowed to purchase and consume liquor and other alcoholic drinks. Nevertheless, there are existing government restrictions on the legal age of obtaining and consuming alcohol. There are also current restrictions on drinking when together with other activities such as driving.
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Less than two decades after the ratification of the Eighteenth Amendment, the Twenty-first Amendment was ratified. The latter Amendment repealed the provisions of the Eighteenth Amendment concerning the nationwide prohibition on the use of liquor. However, the second section of the Twenty-first Amendment prohibits the importation or transport of alcoholic beverages to States where doing so would violate the laws thereof. One of the effects of the ratification of the Twenty-first Amendment is that numerous states retained their laws prohibiting alcohol consumption long after the Amendment was enforced.
Countless public bars remained under State prohibition from selling intoxicating liquor to the public which effectively gave States control over liquor. Today, numerous States have passed the authority to control public alcohol distribution or sales to their different counties and municipalities. In any case, the industry of alcoholic beverages in the United States is now thriving to the point that the manufacturers of these beverages continue to export their products abroad on a regular basis.
While some of the prohibition on local bars on a municipal or county-level led to lawsuits citing First Amendment rights, alcoholic beverages continue to be distributed, sold and consumed for the most part of the country although their distribution, selling and consumption are required to be within the legal limits. The Nineteenth Amendment to the Constitution proscribes both the federal government and the different states from denying Americans from their right to vote on the basis of a person’s sex.
The apparent result of the ratification of the amendment is that women became part of the population eligible to vote for candidates running for government positions. The amendment effectively abolished the limitation of the right to suffrage which was previously accorder only to men. Women became entitled with the right to vote without having to worry about legal restrictions imposed by the government and opposition from other individuals. The effect of the Amendment continues to this day as women continue to partake in the American electoral process.
In essence, the consequences of the Amendment are very visible in public especially during elections. The Twentieth Amendment puts in detail the start and end of the terms of elected federal government officials such as the President and the Vice-President. The Amendment further specifies the role of Congress in appointing a President when the Presidency is vacant. It specifies the order of succession to the Presidency in times when President dies. It also specifies the day in which Congress shall convene unless otherwise legally appointed on a different day.
The effect of the Amendment after ratification is that it gave elected federal government officials the urgency of time to immediately occupy their positions in order to deal with important matters the soonest time possible. It also prevented Congress from convening for a futile session right after the elections as the start of the Congressional session was moved to every third day of January, less than two weeks before the start of the term of the newly elected President and Vice-President. The case of President Barack Obama serves as a contemporary example.
His case illustrates the urgency for the President to start working the soonest time possible in order to address important national concerns, one of which is the current economic crisis that has hit the country and other parts of the world. Finally, the Twenty-second Amendment to the U. S. Constitution sets the limit for the Presidential term. Specifically, the elected President is given up to two four-year terms in office. However, an acting President who has served the remaining two years of office is also entitled to a full two four-year terms in office—the maximum term that a person can hold the position of President is ten years.
As for acting Presidents who have held the position for more than two years, they can only hold office for no more than one term after completing their term as acting President. At the time after the ratification of the Amendment, Dwight Eisenhower was the President. He argued that a second-term President would simply be reduced to a “lame duck” because his political influence and vested powers would be diminished considering that such a President faces an apparent and irreversible deadline on his term.
The President who is about to leave office becomes ineffective to a certain degree because politicians in the government will become more interested in the search for and support of their presidential candidates than in the affairs of the executive branch. These things have been one of the main concerns of the incumbent president—Dwight Eisenhower—at the time of the ratification of the amendment. In more recent times, Americans who oppose the Bush policies on war saw the two-term limit as their saving grace. After the inauguration of George W.
Bush for his second term in office, he was quick to issue several foreign and local policies because he understood that he faces the risk of being a “lame duck” president by the time his second term in office is about to expire. As for current U. S. President Barack Obama, he is entitled to the same two four-year terms that former president George W. Bush had since the time of Eisenhower. Reference Constitution of the United States: Amendments 11-27. Retrieved March 1, 2009, from http://www. archives. gov/exhibits/charters/constitution_amendments_11-27. html
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