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Thursday, November 1, 2012

Conlaw blog assignment-Desegregation


"Lady Justice is pictured as blind, her daughter the law ought to at least be colored blind." (Albion Tourgee: lawyer for the plaintiff in Plessy v Ferguson (1896)

 THE "EQUAL PROTECTION OF THE LAW" WAS GUARANTEED BY THE 14TH AMENDMENT IN 1868.

So why did the desegregation of schools, and the equal access to public facilities for all races take so long after the Brown vs The Board of Education of Topeka Kansas (1954)  case?

36 comments:

  1. Katie Moffett

    This case had such a landmark outcome that this obstructed traditions and lifestyles under which certain people had been living for over two hundred years and therefore as a practical matter it was going to take some time to enforce the Brown V. Board decision. Because the decision was so monumental, the enforcement was going to encounter some resistance. This case was decided in the context of an education system allowing certain people to enter public schools. The reason it took a lot of time was because it might not of been clear to everyone especially opponents of the decision, that it should apply to all other public facilities beyond the public education system. Some people argued it should be limited to its facts and not extend to other public facilities. In addition, there were logistical and organizational difficulties in getting this enforced and providing equal access to everyone.

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    1. Katie Moffett
      Also, The concept of federalism caused a delay in implementing the decision in Brown vs. Board of Education because state and local governments felt that the federal goverrnment had no business trying to enforce a federal law decided by a federal court against the states, even if it was a decision by the U.S. Supreme Court.

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  2. The fighting against slavery was a long hard road in America. Many people were still pro slavery and this alone made it very hard to America to reform. Brown vs. Board of Education paved the way for interracial schools. However, this was an extremely controversial subject in America. Whites who believed they were a superior race were not prepared for this dramatic change. Causing violent hate crimes, racial slurs, and riots all over the country. It clearly states in the constitution that all are created equal in the 14th amendment. Many judges chose to ignore what was written so clearly in front of them. State governments also took part in this by believing that they had the power to over rule the supreme court and ignore what the 14th amendment was intended for. It took far too long to integrate schools and public facilities simply because Americans were too ignorant, proud and racist to allow african americans the freedom that is so obviously stated in Americas Constitution.

    Allison Bliven

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  3. The desegregation of schools, and the equal access to public facilities for all races took so long after the Brown Vs The Board of Education of Topeka Kansas (1954) because racism still existed, just because they made desegregation laws, doesn't mean that everyone started following it right away. Therefore fifty years laters some say, it still is not completely active there are still racists out there, aka the KKK for a prime example. Yes, it has worked just look around the room and imagine fifty years early you would not be sitting with some of these people. Back then people thought whites were superior to everyone else, and also the white people stayed in power of all the decision making so, this is why it went untouched for fifty years.
    - Jack Fox

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  4. Bryan Bohaty
    As with the ratification of the 14th amendment, the Brown case did not change one deep-rooted sentiment, racism. The police did not want to enfore the new law and therefore, the changes would not be instituted. The changes took so long to be put into place because most Americans did not want the law to be in place, and therefore did not enfore it, or abide by it.

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  5. Eric Samuel

    Desegregation of schools took so long after Brown vs The Board of Education of Topeka Kansas because people was against different races go to the same school. No one wanted change so they weren't going to accept it. When people saw the outcome it may have changed a couple of people's hearts, but not everyones. A lot of people was mad over the decision because they wasn't used to it. A lot of people may have not wanted to honor it also because of the aftermath it would of caused. They may have realized that a lot of people would have a riot against it and didn't want the kids or their school boards to get affected by this whole situation.

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  6. Before the case of Brown v. Board of Education, whites were used to living the lifestyle of segregation. They were accustomed to being separated during activities such as drinking from a water fountain, using bathrooms, taking different buses, etc. The decision of the case probably caused whites to protest against it and try to keep things the same as they were. The decision would obviously cause some opposition from the white people. They argued that this desegregation should be limited and that they should only have access to certain facilities and activities. This probably took a long time because it was a major change in society that just needed some time to sink in and get used to.

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  7. Sam Woodcock

    The ignorance and stupidity of Americans is to blame for this. In 1868 the 14th amendment was created to ensure all citizens, black or white, of the United States equal protection of the law. Because so many Americans at this time honestly believed that African Americans were inferior to the whites, the idea of desegregation of schools and public places was hard to understand for them. Not until after the Supreme Court case, Brown V. The Board of education of Topeka Kansas, which was almost 90 years after the 14th amendment was created, did segregation begin to die down. Racism was not an uncommon thing at this time. The idea of White Americans not being superior to African Americans, but being equal and together in public facilities was hard to grasp for the average white American. Racism was a bad habit that people needed to drop. In today’s world, If smoking became illegal, an American who was so familiar with it and did it on an everyday basis would have a hard time giving it up. Therefor, racism, which was so common, took a long time to stop.

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  8. In 1868, the 14th amendment guaranteed “equal protection of the law”. Even with this amendment in place, the desegregation of schools, and the equal access to public facilities for all races did not commence until long after the Brown vs. The Board of Education of Topeka Kansas case in 1954. This is because of the stubborn citizens living in the United States. These people held on to the outdated idea of separate but equal instead of the new public and equal way of life. This wasn’t the only outdated idea the white people held on to. Whites still self-proclaimed themselves the superior race over African- Americans and continued to fight desegregation. I also agree with the point Sam Woodcock brought up in his blog. Racism is like a bad habit and people became so adapted to life with racism and segregation. It is only natural for people to take time to adapt to a new way of life, a life of equality.
    Nick O'Connor

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  9. The main reason that desegregation took so long in public schools and public facilities was the wording of the Supreme Court decision. The Supreme Court stated that the states must desegregate with "all deliberate speed". The ambiguity of this statement meant that states could essentially take as long as they wanted to desegregate facilities, and could still get away with it. This, along with just the general racism felt throughout the Southern United States, made for a very slow and deliberate segregation process.

    Dan Bernstein

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  10. Anna HeissenbuttelNovember 7, 2012 at 6:10 PM

    The Brown V The Board of Education of Topeka case ordered the desegregation of public schools throughout the United States. It was now a violation to the 5th and 14th amendment if a person deprive anyone from an equal opportunity to a good education. Even though public schools could not deny people due to their race, it took time for people to get used to not having separate but equal rules. Due to this, it took awhile to integrate schools but also public facilities like restaurants, busses, and even bathrooms. The whites were superior for years and it was hard for them to adjust to new rules. Some whites believed that they were still superior and used racial slurs or created racist groups such as the KKK to show everyone that they were still in power. Because of these groups and riots other whites were influenced to believe that they should still be in power, therefore it made it hard for the law to really settle in America.


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  11. Greg Rose

    Even after Brown V The Board Of Education Topeka Kansas the desegregation of schools and equal rights to public facilities took so long because racism was so deeply ingrained in white people. Even Abraham Lincoln didn't think that it was even worth the time to argue that black people were not inferior to white people. The white portion of the United States were taught from an early age that they were superior to black people, even once they were deemed equal in the eyes of the law, that belief still took a long time to diminish. This racism still prevailed in how the law was interpreted and applied for much longer than it ever should have. People were ignorant in how they interpreted the 14th amendment and wrongly bent the rules of the law for a century after its addition to the constitution.

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  12. Hattie Waldron

    “The Pursuit of Justice” by Kermit Hall and John Patrick, states perfectly why desegregation took so long after the Brown case, "The Court proclaimed an end to legal segregation based on race but then stopped short of demanding an immediate solution. No matter the immortality of segregation, it could only be eliminated gradually," (129). In other words, although public segregation became illegal there was no other resolution to racism other than giving it time.

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  13. America had been deeply rooted with hatred and racism with the notion that whites are more superior than blacks. The whites Americans had been raised, taught and believed that segregated schools were the way things should be. After the case Brown vs. Board of Education, it opened a door for interracial schools. Although in theory it was great, America itself was not ready for this drastic change to occur. White Americans could not fathom the idea that African Americans would be sitting in the same classroom as their children let alone being in the same school. Even African Americans were not fully supportive of the schools being interracial. They had a right to fear that their children could be bullied, beaten up and treated unfairly in an interracial school. Both sides rejected schools becoming desegregated which added to the time it took for schools become interracial. The State governments also believed that the US supreme court has no right to interfere with their way of how they ran their schools. Whites were to stubborn and idiotic to see that everyone is equal and deserves a good education no matter what your skin color is.

    Bella Sinsigalli

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  14. Miles Busby
    Although the 14th Amendment was an important stepping stone in the
    desegregation of America, It did not ensure equal protection of the
    law for all citizens in America. Because white citizens had always
    believed themselves to be superior to African American citizens, a
    single case would not convince the white Americans that they were
    wrong. Desegregation was a long fought war that took many acts of
    bravery and influential people to convince America of the equality of
    black citizens. I also agree with the point Nick and Sam brought up
    that racism is like a bad habit that is tough to drop.

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  15. The desegregation of schools and public areas took so long after the Brown Vs. The Board of Education of Topeka Kansas case of 1954, because racism still existed in 1954. Racism, in the early and mid 1900's was a social norm in every aspect. Schools and public areas had become accustomed to be divided from whites and blacks, mostly because blacks weren't given equal rights as the average white male citizen. The sudden change of Brown vs. The Board of Education took many people by surprise, and as a result made majority of southern whites vexed. Less than a hundred years prior black slaves were considered property of white male land owners, and now they currently not only given citizenship, but also given equal rights as those white land owners. As a southern white male slave owner, equality would be a change in society that would not be supported, and strongly apposed. The reason for segregation to not immediately change is simply because of standard of living. The common white male didn't want change in a time of growth and prosperity, and allowing blacks the same rights as the white male would allow for a dramatic potential change. It is difficult for explaining why it took so long for the laws to implemented towards segregation, but I believe it is simply because of the social norms and allowing "inferior" beings the same rights as the "superior" ones.

    -Will Knight

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  16. George Frick
    Racism was one of the main reasons that the desegregation of schools and public facilities took so long. Ever since the start of the country, racism was a part of daily life. Many white citizens have always believed that their race was more superior than others. It would be hard for the white citizens to change their way of life with out resistance, because they have been treated as superior to the blacks their whole lives. Resistance to following desegregation laws would therefore be unavoidable. Anther reason, like katie said, is that some of the state governments would not want to allow the federal government to tell them what laws to follow. State governments thought that the federal government was infringing on their rights to create laws, thus causing more resistance to the desegregation laws.

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  17. The desegregation of schools and equal access to public facilities took a while after the Brown V. Board of Education case because intense and violent racism towards African Americans still was well intact. In addition, the 14th amendment did not have an immediate impact on the progression of desegregating schools and public facilities. Racism, unfortunately, didn't immediately stop in its tracks after the case and the 14th were ratified. The white race still deeply desired power and rights over that of the African American race. The main reason why desegregation took so long was because white people maintained a strong hate and racist demeanor towards African Americans, as well as the states wanting to make their own laws and rules in regards to segregation. This resulted in state governments believing that they had the power to over rule the supreme court and national government.

    -Chris Gaynor

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  18. Murphy Newman

    The 14th Amendment clearly stated that there should be equal protection of the law no matter your race (1868). Even though this amendment was created, racism did not come to a complete halt in America. In 1954 much of America had racially segregated schools made by the case of Plessy v Ferguson in 1896. This meant that racially segregated public places were constitutional as long as they were both equal to one another. In the 1950's lawyers began to bring in class action lawsuits regarding the school children would be attending according to their race. One such case was Brown v Board of Education of Topeka Kansas (1954). This case proved that segregated schools violated the 14th amendment which meant that the young girl would be able to attend whatever school she chose. Even though this was set into action, racism still was active throughout America. Violence towards African American's still often occurred among groups such as the Ku Klux Klan. It was an ongoing battle to end segregation for quite some time in America in which the work of one court case could not completely end.

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  19. Today we are lucky enough to live in a completely equal, non racist society. Unfortunately, 60 years ago that was not the case. These people were raised up in a racist society, making racism a normality that will be difficult to change. In 1954 the Browns sued the Board of Education because they tried to deny their little girl her "equal protection under the law". They won this case and started the desegregation of schools throughout the Nation. However, even though Albion Tourgee said "Lady Justice is pictured as blind, her daughter the law ought to at least be colored blind", that doesn't mean that the white Americans sending their children to the schools were colorblind as well. Therefore, just like any normality, the desegregation of schools and equal access to public facilities would take some time.
    -Robbie Fiamengo

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  20. Maisie Noesen

    Brown vs The Board of Education of Topeka Kansas held that school segregation violated the Equal Protection and Due Process clauses of the Fourteenth Amendment. Yes, “equal protection of the law” was guaranteed by the 14th Amendment in 1868, but segregation continued in our country. As Hattie stated from the book, “The Pursuit of Justice” by Kermit Hall and John Patrick, “No matter the immortality of segregation, it could only be eliminated gradually." People were raised with the idea of Blacks being inferior to whites; time was the only solution to fix the stupidity of the white race.

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  21. After the ruling of Brown v. the Board of Education declared that the segregation of schools was unconstitutional because it was in violation of the fourteenth amendment’s equal protection clause. This ruling caused for schools and other facilities to be desegregated with “all deliberate speed”. After centuries of racism, it was clear that the desegregation wouldn’t transpire over night. The fact that our country had been divided for so long, merging the white and black school systems hardly seemed ideal. The thought of having to share a space with an African-American was like a punishment to someone who was white. No one wanted to do it but by law they had to. Due to the fact that no one particularly liked the idea, people argued and started riots, which dragged out the situation as long as possible in a fruitless effort to stop the process.

    Camryn Biasin

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  22. The ruling of Brown v. The Board of education declared that segregation of schools was unconstitutional and violated the fourteenth amendment. This ruling said that all schools and other facilities were to be desegregated. The reason these schools took a long time to become desegregated was because of the wording in which the supreme court used. They said that with "all deliberate speed" desegregation needed to occur. Because of the confusion that this statement brought and general racism people took as long as they wanted to desegregate and also put effort into stopping the process of desegregation.

    -Jared Shatkin

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  23. Just because the law was changed didn't mean that citizens and organizations were going to abide by it. It took a while for schools to be desegregated and equal access to public facilitates for all races, because the progress could only move as fast as the people of america wanted it to. After the ruling of Brown v. The board of education, It took time for peoples opinions and points of view to change, and it became a gradually movement, not a swift and speedy change of law. Many US citizens at the time were not wiling to have such drastic changes to their country and government. And as we know today change is not something that happens overnight, it takes time and the perseverance of hard working like minded individuals.

    -> Hayden Dunham

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  24. The 14th Amendment should have guaranteed equal protection under the law for everyone of ever race America in 1868. However this was not the case, state sponsored discrimination continued and even worsened by the implementation of Jim Crow laws. Not until the decision of Brown v The Board of Education (1954) did the United States justice system remede the issue of state sponsored raceal segregation. The implementation of the ruling by the court to desegregate public schools and other facilities was hampered by deep seated racism in parts of the country, also by poor public planing which created organizational and logistical issues for school desegregation. The wording that the supreme court used also slowed the process because the program was soposed to take effect with "all deliberate speed" which is a loosely defined term so the racist in charge went as slow as possible.

    - Mark Nordhausen

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  25. The case Brown Vs. The Board Of Education Of Topeka Kansas in 1954 was passed by citing the 14th amendment that provides equal protection of the law from 1868. After the case passed, desegregation of schools and equal access of public facilities was mandated across the country. Despite the new legislature, most of the country was slow to accept the new law because racism and segregation was customary. In a Judicial system where Lady Justice is depicted blind, legislation changes our country's path through law, but the peoples readiness to change determines the progression of customs within the union.
    -Thomas Benfield

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  26. Even though the 14th Amendment guarantees "The equal protection of the law"and Lady Justice is pictured blind, there was still widespread racism and segregated public facilities throughout the US into the mid 20th century. The case of Brown v Board of Education of Topeka Kansas desegregated all public schools and facilities. This was not done immediately. One reason, as Dan Bernstein stated in his comment, was that the Supreme Court ordered the desegregation to be done with "all deliberate speed". This means the states can take their time and desegregate when ever they want to. Therefore, in many of the Southern states where racists were in power, they would not take action or desegregate any facilities. This is because they did not want to change the status quo. These racists were brought up on the idea that not all people were born equal and whites are superior to blacks. So it would take a while for them to understand that all people are created equal and have equal rights.

    Jack O'Donoghue

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  27. The Plessy V. Ferguson case failed to achieve its goal of voiding all laws that allowed the separate accommodations of Black and White races. Therefore, this case gave a justification for why "Separate but Equal" was constitutional. Thus,this case became the basis for the social customs of the times. This decision was so counterproductive that as a result the only way that Plessy V. Ferguson was unconstitutional is if the facilities that are separated aren't equally clean. This is the only instance. It is because of these customs why society took so long to conform to the decision of the Brown V. Education case.

    Kimberley Henry

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  28. Will Aldam

    The 14th amendment granted all people equal protection under the law. This amendment was basically ignored by the supreme court for a long period of time as racism and corruption was evident in the supreme court itself. When the 14th is actually abided by, in cases like Brown v Board of Education, it was now the people who made it difficult to uphold this amendment. Brown vs Board of Education desegregated the public school system, but it took a very long time for this to happen. This is partly due to the fact that schools were told to desegregate with "All deliberate speed" which is very open ended. This enabled the racist people, often seen in the south, to take as much time as they wanted before they actually had to desegregate their towns school as some just stayed the way they were until the government had to step in with military services.

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  29. The people of America were ok with being racist towards black people. The ruling in the case of Plessy V. Ferguson supported their belief by declaring that blacks are " Separate but Equal." The case Brown V. Board of Education argued that the 14th amendment guaranteed the protection of all citizens equally by the law. Brown won the case, but I believe this took so long because it is hard to except someone as equal when you have looked down on them for so long. The Supreme court was at fault in Plessy V Ferguson by not taking it into their own hands to rule about "Separate but Equal" on a National level. This in my opinion is q major flaw of the Supreme Court, the inability to address matters aside from the cases they judge. If the supreme court had ruled that Plessy V. Ferguson was unconstitutional things would've been different and blacks would've been accepted in our country sooner.
    - Fortenbaugh

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  30. Despite the 14th amendments assurance of "equal protection of the law", the desegregation of schools and the equal access to public facilities still took a long time after the Brown Vs. The Board of Education of Topeka Kansas (1954) because even though the law now protected all races and insured integration of all races it did not stop the deep rooted racism in American citizens. The law did not have the ability to change peoples beliefs overnight, it took time for peoples bigoted and intolerant views to dissipate in order to adapt to this new society that was created by the 14th amendment and the rulings on the cases such as Brown vs. The Board of Education of Topeka Kansas (1954)  and Plessy vs. Ferguson (1896).
    Another factor that delayed the process of integration was that the parents wanted, above all else, to protect their children and to make sure they got the best education possible. So in some cases parents felt that busing their child across town to a new school in order to desegregate the school was not in their child's best interest, so they fought the change. Not even because they did not believe in integration but because they wanted what was best for their son or daughter.

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  31. Segregation and racism were lingering issues during the twentieth century even after the 1954 Brown vs. The Board of Education of Topeka Kansas case. This case used the “equal protection of the law,” which required all public schools and various other facilities to desegregate. The social standard within this time period involved the superiority of whites over blacks; when the 14th amendment was established society’s disagreement to its’ terms, caused conflict and rebellion in terms of African American rights as citizens. White males had been living in a society primarily concerned with their idea of “fair”, so when the regulation began its’ transformation, many uprisings and protests were instigated. Although these events triggered the desegregation for public schools, segregation continued to linger, due to the arrogance of white Americans.

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  32. Racism was huge issue before and after the case of Brown vs. The Board of Education of Topeka Kansas. Segregation would take some time to happen after this case because of they way whites and blacks were brought up during this time period. Whites were taught since they were born that Black's were inferior to them and that they should not be treated fairly. Black's were brought up knowing they would not be treated fairly and would be abused by whites. These views would not change overnight, its all they knew and it would take a while before each race excepted the change. Also, trying to force this segregation led to hate crimes and racial slurs these two races would not get along in any environment safely for a little while because of there views on the other. For this same reason the 14th amendment of "equal protection under the law" took awhile to be enforced even after the Brown vs. The Board of Education of Topeka Kansas case.

    Tyler Behring

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  33. People of the United States were so accustomed to segregation that they did not want to change. White Americans and the Supreme Court simply refused to acknowledge the 14th Amendment. As Justice Brown (Plessy v. Ferguson) said “the 14th Amendment was not intended to enforce social equality or to abolish distinctions based on race.” He believed that the Constitution was not intended to bring an inferior race up to the same playing field as white people. This is the root cause of why the 14th Amendment was ignored: white Americans believed black people and other races were inferior to their own and did not want to treat them equally. Furthermore, around the time Brown vs. The Board of Education of Topeka Kansas (1954) white Americans did not want their children going to school with black children, not only because they believed the black race to be inferior, but also because they feared for the safety of their children. Simply, white Americans found excuses to continue to act as they pleased and to ignore the Constitution when it did not suit them.

    Kira von Steinbergs

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  34. After Brown v Board the sheer ignorance and racism of Americans is the reason why it took so long. The "Superior race" (white) at the time believed that anyone who wasnt "100 %" white was inferior to them. In 1868, the 14th amendment was created to ensure all to have "equal protection of the law." But In 1896, in the Plessy v. Ferguson case the Supreme Court believed that "separate but equal" was constitutional. As Kira stated Justice Brown said “the 14th Amendment was not intended to enforce social equality or to abolish distinctions based on race.” The whites didnt want there kids going to school with colored people because they feared that bad things would happen to their kids. Schools were told to desegregate at "All deliberate speed" which allowed schools to do things such as closing down school systems, using state money to finance segregated "private" schools which made them less than proactive about enforcing the Brown decisions. So because of all these events desegregation wasn't going to happen over night, which lead to many years of fighting and many deaths.
    - Marquis Carr

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