How Did the Laws and Cases of the Progressive Era Affect What Happening Today?

The Progressive Era is the period from the 1890s to 1920s which was a period of expansion on social activism, economic, moral reform and political reforms across the United States of America (Boyer et al., 2015). The progressives comprised of a new middle class consisting of young professionals, journalist, political reformers, and socialists. Their main objective was to make American society a better and safer place to live by doing away with issues caused by immigration, industrialization, urbanization, and corruption in the government. The growing cities due to industrialization magnified problems of poverty, disease, crime and corruption.

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During the Progressive Era, large businesses were represented by greedy leaders controlled the country’s finances (Boyer et al., 2015). Immigrants were also flocking in the major industrial centers, to compete for the low wages and settling in their ethnic groups. The party leaders took advantage of the situation and manipulated the people who were politically ignorant. The widespread dissatisfaction with new trends in the United States society incited the Progressive Era.

During the Progressive Era, people were able to bring changes as the judiciary was the most traditionalist system. During this period there was passing of the 14th, 17th, 18th Amendments among others that have an impact on our daily lives today. In the 1880s, the Supreme Court had fundamentally redefined the Fourteenth Amendment, which had been authorized in 1868 to empower the federal government to overturn state laws that violated citizens’ right. The Fourteenth Amendment is still used up to date, which addresses citizenship right and equal safety of the rules. The Amendment protects the citizen from irritation or discrimination against people belonging to the various group.

The Fifteenth Amendment during the Progressive Era prohibited the state from disenfranchising voters on account of ethnic group, color or former state of servitude (Foley, 2015). The Amendment is still used in today’s Constitution hence continuing to affect what is happening today as black men and women are voting as citizen throughout the country. Moreover, they are entitled to every right found in the United States Constitution, which is a success to the Fifteenth Amendment.

The Seventeenth Amendment was ratified in the Progressive Era, which replaced the legislative picking the United States senators. This Amendment reduced the influence of the state legislative over the United States senators (Foley, 2015). The Amendment is used in the new Constitution, which affects the daily happening as it ensures that every state has an equal amount of representatives.

The Eighteenth Amendment during the Progressive Era expelled the trade and consumption of alcohol in the United States, it took effect in 1919. This is the law that is parallel to the current law, the Twenty-First Amendment. The Twenty-First Amendment revoked the Eighteenth Amendment in 1933. The Twenty-First Amendment allowed drinking and selling of alcohol. However, the state is to uphold an operational and unchanging structure for monitoring alcohol, by regulating carriage, importation, and use.

The fair ruling, the decrease in corruption, in crimes, and drug trafficking and selling have been causing lasting effect on the criminal justice system in the United States today. This has led to formation of the moral upright society that unites the nation due to a successive criminal justice system.

As a leader in criminal justice system, my role is to ensure that all the policies and procedures are followed, and also ensure a logical and effective order in place.



Boyer, P. S., Clark, C. E., Halttunen, K., Kett, J. F., & Salisbury, N. (2016). The enduring vision: A history of the American people. CA: Cengage Learning.

Foley, C. (2015). A Twenty-Sixth Amendment Challenge to State Voter ID Laws. The University of Chicago Legal Forum, 585.