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5.2 A Flexible Framework. Why have there been so few changes?. The framers knew that what worked 1787 may not work in the future Gave general principles Allowing future generations the freedom to fill in the details. The Role of the Supreme Court.

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why have there been so few changes
Why have there been so few changes?
  • The framers knew that what worked 1787 may not work in the future
  • Gave general principles
  • Allowing future generations the freedom to fill in the details
the role of the supreme court
The Role of the Supreme Court
  • The Supreme Court has the final say on whether the Constitution is being followed correctly
  • Overturning a decision
    • Supreme court decisions are always final
      • Could be overturned by an amendment like the Dred Scott case and the 13th Amendment
      • Could be overturned by a later court ruling
the role of the supreme court1
The Role of the Supreme Court
  • Interpreting a principle
    • As society changes the court may change the way it interprets a principle
    • Example: The 14th Amendment and Equal Protection – everyone must be treated fairly, but not always the same
  • This has often come up in the idea of segregation
equality and segregation
Equality and Segregation
  • Over the years cases have come up on this issue
  • Plessy v. Ferguson (1896)
    • After the 14th Amend. Many states separated blacks and whites in public places
    • Homer Plessy
      • Refused to leave a whites only railroad car
      • Said it violated his right to equal protection
      • The courts ruled that it was allowed as long as the cars were of equal quality
      • For 50 years the country went with the idea of SEPARATE BUT EQUAL
opposition to segregation
Opposition to Segregation
  • Not everyone agreed with the separate but equal concept
  • And not all of the facilities were truly “equal”
  • In the 1950’s legal cases brought by the NAACP and Thurgood Marshall (later Supreme Court Justice) argued that point
brown v the board of education
Brown v. the Board of Education
  • Linda Brown (African-American girl) lived only 7 blocks away from a whites only school
  • The Black school was 21 blocks away
  • Her parents sued to attend the “white” school
  • Thurgood Marshall argued that black children felt inferior to white students and white students felt superior – harming both
brown v the board of education1
Brown v. the Board of Education
  • The courts agreed that separate but equal was inherently unequal when it came to education
  • It also overturned the entire idea of separate but equal from Plessy v. Ferguson
equality and affirmative action
Equality and Affirmative Action
  • After the Brown case many laws outlawing segregation were passed
  • Not just for African-Americans, but also for Asian-Americans, Hispanic-Americans, and Native-Americans
  • Affirmative Action
    • In order to undo the effects of years of segregation companies and colleges had to consider the race and gender of the people they hire or students they admit
equality and affirmative action1
Equality and Affirmative Action
  • California v. Bakke (and Grutter v. Bollinger)
    • The courts ruled that schools and employers may use race as a factor in order to promote more diversity
women and equality
Women and Equality
  • The courts used the equal protection principle for women in the work place
  • Ida Phillips
    • Applied for a job
    • Was asked questions about having children
    • Because men were not asked these questions she was not treated equally
a framework for the future
A Framework for the Future
  • These cases are use to help the courts in ruling on racial and gender discrimination
  • They can be applied to any race and in many situations
  • Although we may need amendments periodically it looks like our Constitution is solid moving formward