Prohibition was a success or a failure depending on how you look at it. I will explain both instances below. Prohibition did put a decrease in the alcohol use but there was other problems that decreasing it caused. Truthfully it did not eliminate drinking, but created a black market. This in turn caused random violence. Another idea of why it may have been a failure is because the United States was founded on being a free country and having the right to choose what you want. And with the prohibition amendment telling people what they could do, people saw it as the government was going against the basic foundations that we have created. Prohibition also caused the government to lose a lot of money. If the sale of alcohol was illegal then the government could not collect sales tax on the sale of alcohol.
Prohibition was part of the eighteenth amendment. This amendment prohibited the manufacture and distribution of alcohol beverages. However it did not stop people from drinking or for individuals producing it and using it themselves. When the eighteenth amendment was passed it still was not in effect for a year so people had plenty of time to stock up before the law was in effect.
Once the law was passed alcohol consumption declined drastically. Cirrhosis death rates were down and admissions to state hospitals for alcoholic psychosis declined. Arrests for public drunkenness declined fifty percent from when before prohibition to when it started. Consumption of alcohol declined by 30 to 50 percent. Violent crime rates also went down. Homicide rates were really up from 1900 to 1910 but remained constant during the 14 year prohibition period. However on the other hand, there was a more rapid development of organized crime.
Prohibition however did not end alcohol use. People knew that the law was passed so they bought up alcohol while they could to have it available. Bootleggers became rich during this time since they were smuggling from the individuals making moonshine. Drunkenness had not been eliminated, but society had come to accept drunks. The era of prohibition did change everything. Consumption levels did return to pre-1920 levels, but drinking was never seen in quite the same way again.
Another issue was the population of immigrants was reduced. Prohibition gave foreigners a reason to self deport because some of them did not want to stop their drinking habits.
The 18th amendment was repealed in 1933 and replaced by the 21st amendment which canceled the 18th amendment. This was the only constitutional amendment in US history ever rescinded. The 21st amendment was an admission of the terrible failure of prohibition. This was passed because people saw prohibition as leading people to disrespect the law (by bootlegging, smuggling) and causing criminals to sell alcohol illegally.
As you can see prohibition had some pros and cons, however the cons outweigh the pros. I believe this because even though it was illegal, people still found a way to get alcohol which meant they were breaking laws and doing stuff illegally. The alcohol they were buying was more or less homemade which was a lot stronger and could cause more consequences when people drank too much. The pros were that it did stop the consumption of alcohol to some point, and it cut down on certain crimes.