Unformatted text preview: Civil Rights Race and Desegregation Chapter 4 Preliminary Note: Review the Supplement on Slavery in the Early Republic Review Constitutional Democracy for the Civil War, Reconstruction and PostReconstruction Review Federalism for Dred Scott Review Elections for barriers to voting The Era of Jim Crow Separate But Equal Jim Crow Laws "Jim Crow" laws were the next wave of laws aimed at limited the rights of persons of color in the United States Recall: The Black Codes were nullified with the passage of the 14th Amendment and subsequent enforcement acts Jim Crow laws typically provided "separatebutequal" facilities for Black and White Separatebutequal = Segregation Is Jim Crow Constitutional? Does a law requiring separatebutequal facilities for Black and The answer would come in an infamous Supreme Court case in 1896 White offend the 14th Amendment's equal protection clause? Plessy v. Ferguson (1896) Test case challenging a Louisiana law that required separate but Lead attorney: Albion Tourge Homer Plessy (7/8 white) chosen as the test subject Railroad was complicit in the test equal accommodations on railcars Challenged by a citizens' committee Tourge on the 14th Amendment Separatebutequal is a denial of the equal protection of the laws "Justice is blind, and her daughter, the law, ought to be color Tourge's brief to the Supreme Court
blind." The Supreme Court's Answer Amendment enforces legal/political equality not social equality Amendment reaches the old Black Codes, not laws for the "mutual convenience" of both races Laws requiring separation of races do not imply inferiority but are simply part of the police power There are separate schools in Boston There have been antimiscegenation laws since colonial times Michigan connection: The opinion for the Court was written by a Justice from Michigan! Attacking Jim Crow An Incremental Strategy The NAACP Founded in 1909 to further cause of racial justice The Crisis is the newspaper of the organization Legal Defense fund works through the courts for change Why the Federal Courts?
Elected state legislatures and governors in Southern and Border states were committed to Jim Crow Congressional committees led by representatives and senators from the South Presidents were generally unsympathetic or unwilling to risk a showdown with Congress The Early Focus of the NAACP Antilynching Voting rights Essential to democratic change Enforcement of 15th Amendment End of white primaries Education Key to upward mobility Charles Houston's Strategy Accept separate but insist on equal Begin with graduate and professional schools Would assure continued leadership for movement Small numbers of students would be nonthreatening to the White majority Adults (probably already married) lessened fears of interracial marriage The Strategy, Continued
Work down through the grades Hope that segregation would collapse under the financial strain of providing truly equal duplicate public facilities If not, at some point "go for the jugular" Efforts directed at Jim Crow law schools in southern and border states Some states had white law schools but no black law schools Unconstitutional under Plessy, state: Must create a separate but equal school, or Admit black student to white school Early Cases The Strategy in Action: An Example
Jim Crow in Law School 1950 Sweatt v Painter Facts Texas figured out that it could not get away with not having a Texas rushed to create the "Texas Law School for Negroes" There was now a separate school, but was it equal to the University of Texas Law School? Black law school A Comparison Professors UT: 16 full time, 3 part time BS: 5 full time Students UT: 850 BS: 23 Library UT: 65,000 volumes BS: 16,500 volumes More Comparisons Law Review and Moot Court UT: yes BS: no Practice court rooms UT: yes BS: no Order of the Coif (law honor society) UT: yes BS: no The Oklahoma Graduate School Case
Another Example of the Strategy in Action 1950 Mr. McLaurin was a 60year teacher at Black college He had a master's degree but wanted a Ph.D, but: The only Ph.D. program was at the Whitesonly University of Oklahoma What Oklahoma Did Oklahoma did not try to replicate a graduate program for one Instead, Mr. McLaurin was admitted to UO However, he was segregated from his classmates while studying Black student at the university How the Segregation Worked Cafeteria was opened an hour early so he could eat alone He was given a study carrel in the basement behind stacks of "Special" "coloredonly" spaces were created for him in the classroom discarded newspapers The Court's Decision All these artificial barriers had a detrimental effect on Mr. McLaurin's education, making it unequal to the that of his classmates Part of graduate education comes from the interaction with faculty and other students Preventing such interaction is what renders McLaurin's education experience unequal Going for the Jugular The Final Attack on the Principle of Separatebutequal Brown v. Board of Education (1954) Decision cannot turn on tangible factors; must look at the effect Segregation itself is the injury Cannot turn the clock back to 1896 must look at the functions of Separate but equal has no place
public education in America of segregation itself Resistance to Brown The Brown decision radically and permanently altered life in the Some citizens and government officials actively resisted complying with the Supreme Court decision U.S. The Civil Rights Movement After Brown, the struggle for civil rights becomes a political Two events (led by Martin Luther King) change public opinion and sympathies against the segregationists 1963 March on Birmingham 1963 March on Washington attracts 250,000 struggle A Change in Attitude Images of violence against civil rights protestors change White America's attitude People finally understood the virulent nature of Southern racism Sympathy and support switch to supporters of civil rights Civil Rights Act of 1964 Outlaws discrimination in inns, hotels, transportation, restaurants, Reached private discrimination Voting Rights Act of 1965 Eliminated barriers to voting theaters and other places of public accommodation The Political Response Desegregation to Integration Emphasis in courts switches to integration in the 1960s Insistence on results rather than plans Swann v. CharlotteMecklenburg Board of Education (1971) Busing within reasonable limits is an acceptable tool of school integration Impact of Busing White public opinion is overwhelmingly against busing Supreme Court has limited busing to busing within a school district Result is white flight Whites can move to suburbs to escape integration Desegregation in the North By the 1950s northern states did not have de jure segregation De jure: means required by law Northern states alleged that segregation observed was simply the result of voluntary choices or economic conditions De facto: a product of facts The Importance of the Distinction The 14th Amendment limits state government action only "No state shall deny..." De facto segregation is seen as the product of private choices, Courts cannot remedy the effects of de facto segregation
not government action ...
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