CIVIL RIGHTS Chapter 6 O’Connor and Sabato American Government: Continuity and Change
In this chapter we will cover… • Slavery, Abolition, and Winning the Right to Vote, 1800-90 • The Push for Equality, 1890-1954 • The Civil Rights Movement • Other Groups Mobilize for Rights
What are Civil Rights? Civil Rights refers to the positive acts governments take to protect against arbitrary or discriminatory treatment by government or individuals.
Slavery, Abolition, and Winning the Right to Vote (1800-1890) • Slavery and Congress • In 1808 Congress banned slave trade. • The South was heavily dependent on cheap slave labor. • The North was becoming industrial. • In 1820 Missouri applied for admission as a slave state. • Admission of Missouri as a slave state would have given the slave states a majority in the Senate and was strongly opposed in the North.
The Abolitionist Movement • Founded by William Lloyd Garrison, the American Anti-Slavery Society (1833) reinvigorated the abolitionist movement. • Northern interest in emancipation, pushed by abolitionists, eroded relations between the North and South. • William Lloyd Garrison's Liberator was the voice of abolitionism, calling for immediate emancipation of the slaves.
Heightened Tensions (1850s) • In 1852, Harriet Beecher Stowe published Uncle Tom’s Cabin. • In Dred Scott v. Sanford (1857) the Supreme Court ruled that slaves were not citizens of the United States. • Could not bring suits in federal court • Missouri Compromise ruled unconstitutional
Missouri Compromise (1820) • Allowed the admission of Missouri as a slave state along with the admission of Maine as a free state. • Balance of power was preserved but the conflict raged on.
The Civil War and Its Aftermath:Some Direct Causes for Conflict • Conflict over slavery (the Taney Court left little choice) • Conflict over nullification • North’s increasing strength in Congress • Southern agriculture v. Northern industry • Southern conservative culture v. Northern progressive ideas
Emancipation Proclamation (1863) • Abraham Lincoln, on January 1, 1863, during the American Civil War, declared all "slaves within any State, or designated part of a State ... then ... in rebellion, ... shall be then, thenceforward, and forever free."
The Civil War Amendments • Thirteenth Amendment: banned all forms of slavery and involuntary servitude • FourteenthAmendment: guarantees equal protection of the laws and due process to all citizens • Fifteenth Amendment: specifically gives black men the right to vote • Shortly after ratification the Southern states devised ways around these amendments by passing laws (Black Codes) that restricted opportunities for black Americans.
Black Codes • Southern states passed laws (Black Codes) that prohibited black Americans from: • Voting, if illiterate • Sitting on juries • Or even appearing in public places • In direct response to the Civil Rights Laws and Thirteenth Amendment requiring ratification as a pre-condition for southern states to be readmitted to the union
Jim Crow Laws • During the years of Jim Crow, state laws mandated racial separation of many places, including: • schools • restaurants • hotels • public transportation • theatres • restrooms • Many Jim Crow Laws banned interracial marriages. • These laws remained in effect throughout the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s.
Intent of the Fifteenth Amendment • To avoid the intent of the Fifteenth Amendment, Southerners moved to exclude African American voters with: • Poll taxes • Literacy tests • Whites-only primaries • Grandfather clauses
Sample Questions from a Literacy Test State of Louisiana One wrong answer denotes failure of the test. (10 min) • Draw a line around the number or letter of this sentence. • Draw a line under the last word in this line. • Cross out the longest word in this line. • Draw a line around the shortest word in this line. • Circle the first, first letter of the alphabet in this line. • In the space below draw three circles, one inside the other. • Above the letter X make a small cross. • Draw a line through the letter below that comes earliest in the alphabet. ZVSEDGMKYTPHC • Draw a line through the letter below that comes last in the alphabet. ZVSEDGMKYTPHC • In the space below write the word noise backwards and place a dot over what would be its second letter should it have been written forward. • Give your age in days.
Thirteenth Amendment • Banned Slavery • Black Codes immediately implemented to restrict opportunities • Civil Rights Act 1866 – • along with the Fourteenth Amendment to ensure full rights of citizenship specifically to “males”. • Provided an avenue for blacks to file discrimination suits in the Federal Courts and by-pass the state courts
After Fourteenth Amendment • Civil Rights Act of 1875 – equal access to public accommodations such as theatres, restaurants, transportation, etc. • Jim Crow Laws implemented – requires segregation in public schools and facilities like railroads, restaurants and theatres • The Civil Rights Cases (1883) – convictions of those violating the Civil Rights Act of 1875 • Many were overturned by SC • Supreme Court upholds Jim Crow Laws • Argued that private acts of discrimination are not unlawful
Women’s Rights Movement • Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Lucretia Mott founders • Support of William Lloyd Garrison – Abolitionist and publisher of the Liberator • Frederick Douglas – Orator and Journalist – North Star
The Seneca Falls Convention (1848) • Slavery was not the only practice that people began to question in the early years of America. Custom dictated that women not speak out in public and laws were constructed to make women second-class citizens. • The Seneca Convention gathered people from New York State who believed that all men and women should be given the same rights of citizenship.
Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments and the Women’s Movement • Women’s movement opposed the language extending voting rights only to “males”. • Fifteenth Amendment excludes mention of sex. • Led to the formation of the NWSA – started by Anthony and Stanton
Bradwell v Illinois – Myra Bradwell passes Illinois bar exam but is denied admission to the Illinois Bar • “The natural and proper timidity and delicacy which belongs to the female sex evidently unfits it for many of the occupations of civil life” • Minor v. Happersett – NWSA inspired • One of a series of test cases by women’s rights activists • Attempts to register to vote in St. Louis, MO • Court rules “voting is not a privilege of citizenship”
Progressive Era – Women’s Movement is Strengthened • Muller v. Oregon – State Law limiting women to 10 hour work days. (National Consumer’s League) • Employer convicted under new law • Law is upheld in Supreme Court • Fragile condition of women and their important role in child rearing is of ‘public interest’ • Brandeis Brief – used sociological data to win this case • NWSA departs from earlier notions of equality to argue for voting rights based on Muller • Nineteenth Amendment - women given right to vote under notion of ‘public interest’ decided in Muller (National Consumer’s League)
Organizations Form to Push for Equality • Key Women’s Groups • NAWSA(National American Women’s Suffrage Association – AWSA and NWSA merged • Temperance League – ban alcohol • National Consumers’ League – fought for 10 hour work days
Women are Allowed to Vote • Coalition of women’s groups secured the ratification of the Nineteenth Amendment (1920) guaranteeing all women the right to vote. • Membership in NAWSA growing from 10,000 to 2 million members
2. The Push for Equality,1890-1954 • The Progressive Era (1889-1920) saw many reforms in: • Child labor laws • Monopolies • Prejudice • However, in what many call the Supreme Court’s darkest hour, the Court legitimized the principle of “separate but equal” in its ruling Plessy v. Ferguson (1896).
Plessy v. Ferguson(1896) • Homer Adolph Plessy (7/8ths white, 1/8th black) boarded a train in New Orleans and sat in the “whites only” car. • Plessy was arrested when he refused to sit in the “colored car.” • Plessy sued arguing that the Fourteenth Amendment made racial segregation illegal.
Separate But Equal Doctrine • The Supreme Court ruled in Plessy that the Louisiana law was constitutional and that separate but equalfacilities for blacks did not violatethe Equal Protection Clause. • The high-court Plessy ruling led to a profusion of Jim Crow laws. • By 1914 every Southern state had passed laws that created two separate societies--one black, the other white.
The Lone Dissenter in Plessy • Justice John Harlan showed foresight when he wrote: • “Our Constitution is color-blind, and neither knows nor tolerates classes among citizens. In respect of civil rights, all citizens are equal before the law. In my opinion, the judgment this day rendered will, in time, prove to be quite as pernicious as the decision made by this tribunal in the Dred Scott case.”
NAACP • Formed in 1909 • Oswald Garrison Villard – founder • Jane Addams • Moorfield Storey – Pres.Bar Assoc. • W.E.B. Dubois – Niagra Movement • Group of educated black African Americans
Legal Defense Fund (LDF) of the NAACP • Formed in 1939 to pursue equality in the nation’s courts. • Led by Thurgood Marshall • First African American Supreme Court Justice (1967-1991)
Litigating For Equality • Brandeis type briefs using sociological data to support legal arguments • Targeted law schools – judges would be sympathetic and less threatening. • Supreme Court shifts focus from economic liberties to individual rights • Lloyd Gaines seeks admission to University of Missouri Law School(1936) • Court orders Missouri to admit or build
Litigating for Equality • NAACP targets Law Schools – judges would be sympathetic • Lloyd Gains – Graduate of Missouri all black college • Applies for admission to UofM Law School and denied • Court orders Missouri to admit or set up a law school just for him
Litigating for Equality • The NAACP set up a legal defense fund (LDF) in 1939 to pursue equality in the nation’s courts. • The Court ruled in Sweatt v. Painterthat it would be impossible for the State of Texas to provide an equal legal education in a separate setting.
Litigating for Equality • In 1950, the Court ruled in favor of Mr. Sweatt and forced the University of Texas Law School to admit him. • In Sweatt v. Painter the Supreme Court struck down the system of "separate but equal" in graduate school education and paved the way for the landmark decision of Brown v. Board of Education in 1954.
Brown v. Board of Education (1954) • Linda Carol Brown was not allowed to attend a school several blocks from her house because it was for white students. Instead, she had to walk several miles to the nearest all-black school. • LDF led by Marshall argued the unconstitutionality of Plessey
Brown v. Board of Education (1954) • The NAACP argued that the intellectual, psychological, and financial damage that befell black Americans precluded any finding of equality under the separate but equal policy. • Doll Study – (Brandeis type approach)
Brown v. Board of Education(1954) Sixty-four years after the Plessy decision the Court struck down the "separate but equal" doctrine in the landmark Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas(1954) decision.
3. The Civil Rights Movement • The Brown v. Boarddecision sparked the development of the modern civil rights movement.
“With All Deliberate Speed:”School Desegregation After Brown • The Court struggled over a remedy. • A year later, in Brown II(1955),the Court ruled that segregated systems must be dismantled “with all deliberate speed.” • Federal district judges enforce
Cooper v. Aaron and Little Rock Central High School • School asks for two and half year delay in implementing Brown • Seen as an ‘evasive scheme’ • Courts rules that: • “no state legislator or executive or judicial officer can war against the Constitution without violating his undertaking to support it.”
The Triumph of Non-Violent Protest • In 1955, Rosa Parks challenged segregation in public transportation. • A new young preacher in Montgomery, Martin Luther King, Jr., was selected to lead the challenge against the segregated bus system. • After a year the boycott succeeded.
Non-Violent Protests • Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. advocated a nonviolent approach to forcing social change. King modeled his philosophy on that of Gandhi, who successfully employed the nonviolent approach in an Indian revolt against the British shortly after World War II.
Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) Dr. King founded the SCLC in 1957. This group used non-violent means such as: • Freedom rides, sit-ins, and boycotts were used to open segregated lunch counters, waiting rooms, public swimming pools, and other public places. • Often local police attacked the peaceful protestors or chose not to defend them from attacking segregationists.
North Carolina Agricultural and Technical College (1960) • Sit ins at local lunch counters at Woolworth’s • Led to more challenges of Jim Crow Laws • Brought attention of national news media
Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) • Freedom Rides to force desegregation of bus stations • Increasing numbers of white college students from the North play a role • Marion Barry, John Lewis, Marian Wright Edelman (first leaders)
Birmingham, Alabama1963 • Stronghold of segregation • King launched massive nonviolent demonstrations • Police violence against protestors • Media images influence President John F. Kennedy to propose civil rights legislation • States legislatures in South would never repeal Jim Crow Laws
The March on Washington • In August 1963, more than 250,000 people marched peacefully in Washington, D.C. to show support for President Kennedy’s congressional motion banning discrimination in public places and accommodations. • Kennedy assassinated Nov. 22, 1963 in Dallas, TX
The Civil Rights Act of 1964: • Led by President Lyndon B. Johnson • Civil Rights top priority • Expanded to include housing, jobs, and equal opportunity issues • Filibuster led by Senator Strom Thurmond • Cloture invoked after eight weeks of filibuster
The Civil Rights Act of 1964: • Outlawed arbitrary discrimination in voter registration. • Barred discrimination in public accommodation. • Authorized the U.S. Justice Department to initiate lawsuits to desegregate schools and public facilities. • Allowed the federal government to withhold funds from discriminatory state and local programs. • Prohibited discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, or sex. • Created the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) to monitor and enforce bans on employment discrimination.
The Impact of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 • Southerners argued Civil Rights Act violated the Constitution giving unwarranted use of federal power to Congress • 1965 Supreme Court upholds act stating that Congress’s commerce power gives its actions legitimacy • A full decade after Brown, less than 1% of African American children in the South attended integrated schools. • Over time, these rulings and laws opened up numerous occupations to minorities and women.
Swann v. Charlotte Mecklenburg School District • In 1971, 29% of black students still in all black schools • Made de jure discrimination illegal • Required increased busing, racial quotas, pairing of schools • de facto discrimination due to housing patterns not effected • Dismantling of federal desegregation plans since 1992