Essay Contest

Warren Adegunle

Warren Adegunle

The Center for Alcohol Policy (CAP) is pleased to announce that Warren Adegunle, a student at the University of Georgia School of Law, is the winner of its Sixth Annual Essay Contest. The CAP national essay contest is intended to foster debate, analysis and examination of state alcohol regulation. The topic of the 2013 contest was: “This year marks the 80th anniversary of the 21st Amendment. Has it achieved its intended purpose?”

Adegunle’s essay, “Achieving Success,” examines the purposes of the 21st Amendment by analyzing the social, political and legislative events of the era and measures these purposes against the actual effects. Specifically, his essay notes the 21st Amendment’s purpose “to wrest from the federal government and to give back to the states the power to regulate alcohol and … to alleviate some of the negative social consequences that Prohibition had wrought on America.”

Adegunle’s essay concludes that the 21st Amendment is a success, stating:

It repealed a good-spirited, but misguided law and gave the states the power to regulate a mostly local issue. Ultimately, before the passage of the 21st Amendment the federal government was not within its proper limits. The federal government was regulating a mostly local issue with police powers completely unenvisioned by the Founders. However, the 21st Amendment changed this, it recalibrated the constitutional balance in an important area of commerce, and it had the positive derivative effect of reducing alcohol crimes.

“The history of our nation’s abuses with alcohol leading up to national Prohibition is critical to understanding the state-based alcohol regulatory system that was put in place following Prohibition’s repeal and the passage of the 21st Amendment,” said CAP Advisory Council member and Samford University Cumberland School of Law Professor Brannon Denning. “This year’s essay contest gave citizens from across the country the opportunity to study our nation’s alcohol policies and examine their impact.”

Joseph Ojih, a professor at Stratford University, was awarded second place for his essay, “Attractions and Merits: Making the Case for the 21st Amendment,” which argues that, in terms of crime reduction, tax revenue generation and the protection of the citizens’ freedom of choice, the 21st Amendment can be considered a success.

Craig Childs, a financial analyst from Virginia, was awarded third place for his essay, “The Twenty-First Amendment: A Lesson in Responsible Lawmaking and Governance,” which illustrates the continued benefits of the 21st Amendment by highlighting the unintended consequences that plagued the Prohibition era; the benefits of the current three-tier alcohol distribution system and the effects of deregulation in the United Kingdom; and the potential impacts to the United States.

The winning entrants receive prizes of $5,000 and $2,500 and $1,000 respectively.

Read the winning essays:

1st Place: Warren Adegunle – Achieving Success

2nd Place: Joseph Ojih - Attractions and Merits: Making the Case for the 21st Amendment

3rd Place: Craig Childs - The Twenty-First Amendment: A Lesson in Responsible Lawmaking and Governance

For more information, please call (703) 519-3090.


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Center for Alcohol Policy
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