Ethyl Alcohol

The production of alcohol for ingestion is a timeless custom which has
occurred since biblical times. Whether it be social drinking or for religious purposes
various cultures throughout the world have utilized different types of the mild
sedative. Alcoholism is a disease which has significant effects on the mind and body.
Although a great number of Americans don't even believe that alcoholism is a disease,
this disorder has grown from a minute population into epidemic proportions.
Ethyl alcohol, or ethanol is the oldest known psychoactive drug. It can cause
feelings of well-being, induce sedation, intoxication and unconsciousness." (Foster,
Foster 10). At one point in America's history Ethyl Alcohol was illegal. U.S.
government officials saw Ethyl Alcohol as a direct threat to the well beingand health
of its users. Furthermore, in 1915 historian William Walker estimated there were
200,000 to 275,000 alcoholics in the United States alone. Legislatures saw alcohol
abusers increasing in population. In addition "the Roaring Twenties reflected a social
rebellion against the conservative tradition…." ( Fitzgerald) In light of this "rebellion",
congress in 1920 ratified the eighteenth amendment and prohibited the production and
retailing of Ethanol. In spite of the legalitiesof producing alcohol, a number of people
still contrived it in underground safehouses. "The good intentioned ideals of he
Prohibition Era led to several ill effects including unbearable hypocrisy within the
American society, corruption on all levels of government, and an astounding death toll,
which was a result of the alarming crime rate." ( Louis 15) All of these things led to
the ratification of the twenty -first amendment.
It was once again legal to drink alcohol. It did not take long for the alcohol
industry to rebound and become bountiful. In fifty – six short years…


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