Presentation on theme: "Civil Rights Protest, 2007The Korematsu case. . Civil libs are protected by the ______ ________ clause of the __________ and __________Amendmenst Civil."— Presentation transcript:
Civil Rights Protest, 2007The Korematsu case
. Civil libs are protected by the ______ ________ clause of the __________ and __________Amendmenst Civil rts are guaranteed by the _______ ___________ clause of the __________ and _________ Amendments Civil rights are policies that extend basic rights to groups historically subject to discrimination; civil liberties are freedoms that are guaranteed to the individual.
Interpreting the Equal Protection Clause ____________ Amendment: nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws
All they have to meet is the rational basis test Classification is reasonable if: It bears a reasonable relation to.. A legitimate governmental purpose Plaintiff has the burden of proof SO... when can the gov’t discriminate? That is, treat one group differently from another? All the time...
But if they discriminate on the basis of race or ethnicity... Then they are discriminating against a SUSPECT CLASS Those classifications are "inherently suspect" so they get "strict scrutiny" The govt must prove A compelling public interest and that there is NO other way to accomplish the purpose of the law
So what about women? Laws which discriminate against women are “quasi-suspect” So they get “heightened scrutiny” State must show its law bears a “substantial relationship” to an “important gov’t interest”
Reed vs Reed 1971: The Idaho Probate Code specified that "males must be preferred to females" in appointing administrators of estates. After the death of their adopted son, both Sally and Cecil Reed sought to be named the administrator of their son's estate (the Reeds were separated). According to the Probate Code, Cecil was appointed administrator and Sally challenged the law in court. Landmark first case to uphold claim for gender disc
An Oklahoma law prohibited the sale of "nonintoxicating" 3.2 percent beer to males under the age of 21 and to females under the age of 18. Curtis Craig, a male then between the ages of 18 and 21, and a licensed vendor challenged the law as discriminatory. Established medium scrutiny... The case name? Craig vs Boren 1976
So... How about laws which discriminate against other groups? The old? Handicapped? The young? They are NOT protected by the 14 th amendment any more than most other groups
Here’s an example of how it works... In Cleburne v. Cleburne Living Center, Inc., 473 U. S. 432, the Court held, inter alia, that mental retardation did not qualify as a "quasi-suspect" classification for equal protection purposes and that, accordingly, a city ordinance requiring a special use permit for the operation of a group home for the mentally retarded incurred only the minimum "rational-basis" review applicable to general social and economic legislation Although "negative attitudes" and "fear" often accompany irrational biases, their presence alone does not a constitutional violation make. Thus, the Fourteenth Amendment does not require States to make special accommodations for the disabled, so long as their actions toward such individuals are rational. They could quite hardheadedly--and perhaps hardheartedly--hold to job- qualification requirements which do not make allowance for the disabled. If special accommodations for the disabled are to be required, they have to come from positive law and not through the Equal Protection Clause.
“The class to which DOMA directs its restrictions and restraints are those persons who are joined in same-sex marriages made lawful by the State. DOMA singles out a class of persons deemed by a State entitled to recognition and protection to enhance their own liberty. It imposes a disability on the class by refusing to acknowledge a status the State finds to be dignified and proper. DOMA instructs all federal officials, and indeed all persons with whom same-sex couples interact, including their own children, that their marriage is less worthy than the marriages of others. The federal statute is invalid, for no legitimate purpose overcomes the purpose and effect to disparage and to injure those whom the State, by its marriage laws, sought to protect in personhood and dignity. By seeking to displace this protection and treating those persons as living in marriages less respected than others, the federal statute is in violation of the Fifth Amendment. This opinion and its holding are confined to those lawful marriages.” Importantly, the decision seems to be applying rational basis review, although it does little to provide a clear analytic framework or solve problematic of rational basis review. Indeed, it introduces a notion of "careful consideration" which is certainly not strict scrutiny, but likewise eschews the intermediate scrutiny favored by the Second Circuit's decision in Windsor and seems to apply to the "animus" aspect of rational basis with "bite." How about US v Windsor?
1995 Adarand Constructors, Inc. v. Peña The Court called for "strict scrutiny" in determining whether discrimination existed before implementing a federal affirmative action program. "Strict scrutiny" meant that affirmative action programs fulfilled a "compelling governmental interest," and were "narrowly tailored" to fit the particular situation. Although two of the judges (Scalia and Thomas) felt that there should be a complete ban on affirmative action, the majority of judges asserted that "the unhappy persistence of both the practice and the lingering effects of racial discrimination against minority groups in this country" justified the use of race-based remedial measures in certain circumstances.
GRUTTER v. BOLLINGER (2003) Does affirmative action in university admissions violate the Equal Protection clause? 5 No in the holistic way it was applied 4 yes Previous Supreme Court decisions about affirmative action GRATZ v. BOLLINGER (2003) Can an undergraduate school use a point system based in part on race for admissions? Yes 3 No 6 UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA v. BAKKE (1978) 5 say quota system used by UC system violated the equal protection clause; 5 say some kind of race consideration is ok
The University of Michigan cases in 2003 show a mixed approach--diversity can be a compelling state interest but it must be narrowly tailored and not look at all like a quota. Grutter v. Bollinger 2003 The court preserved affirmative action in university admissions, upholding by a 5-to-4 vote the "holistic" and "individualized" approach used by the University of Michigan Law School. The majority expressed the expectation that affirmative action would no longer be needed 25 years from now. Chief Justice Rehnquist dissented, along with Justices Kennedy, Scalia, and Thomas. BUT: The University of Michigan's affirmative action program for its undergraduate college was unconstitutional, the court ruled by a 6-to-3 vote, because its awarding of 20 points on a 150-point admissions scale to black, Hispanic and American-Indian applicants was too mechanistic and quota-like.
In 1997, the Texas legislature enacted a law requiring the University of Texas to admit all high school seniors who ranked in the top ten percent of their high school classes. After finding differences between the racial and ethnic makeup of the university's undergraduate population and the state's population, the University of Texas decided to modify its race-neutral admissions policy. The new policy continued to admit all in-state students who graduated in the top ten percent of their high school classes. For the remainder of the in-state freshman class the university would consider race as a factor in admission. Abigail N. Fisher, a Caucasian female, applied for undergraduate admission to the University of Texas in Fisher was not in the top ten percent of her class, so she competed for admission with other non-top ten percent in-state applicants. The University of Texas denied Fisher's application. Fisher filed suit against the university and other related defendants, claiming that the University of Texas' use of race as a consideration in admission decisions was in violation of the equal protection cause of the Fourteenth Amendment and a violation of42 U.S.C. Section The university argued that its use of race was a narrowly tailored means of pursuing greater diversity. The district court decided in favor of the University of Texas, and the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit affirmed the district court's decision. Fisher appealed the appellate court's decision. FISHER v. UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS
Question Does the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment permit the consideration of race in undergraduate admissions decisions?
Yes, but only under a standard of strict judicial scrutiny. Justice Anthony M. Kennedy delivered the opinion for the 7-1 majority. The Supreme Court held that, in affirming the lower court’s decision, the Court of Appeals did not hold the University’s admission policies to a standard of strict scrutiny, so the judgment was incorrect. Based on previous judicial precedent in cases dealing with minority admissions, the Court has held that such cases are reviewable under the Fourteenth Amendment and that they must be reviewed under a standard of strict scrutiny to determine whether the policies are “precisely tailored to serve a compelling governmental interest.” If the policy does not meet this standard, race may not be considered in the admissions process. The Court held that it was the duty of the reviewing court to “verify” that the University policy in question was necessary to achieve the benefits of diversity and that no race-neutral alternative would provide the same benefits. The Supreme Court held that the lower courts did not conduct a sufficient strict scrutiny examination in this case.
Civil rights are policies that extend basic rights to groups historically subject to discrimination... These policies can come from many sources Constitutional Amendment 14, 15, 19, 23, 24, 26th
Civil Rights in the Context of Structural separation of authority Geographical separation of authority
Civil rights are policies that extend basic rights to groups historically subject to discrimination... These policies can come from many sources Courts when they interpret the Constitution: Especially the equal protection clause in the _______ amendment (or by “reverse incorporation” in the 5 th amendment)
Discrimination for “good reasons” can’t look like quotas (Bakke) or points (Gutter)
The Civil Rights Act of 1964 The Age Discrimination in Employment Act Individuals with Disabilities Education Act ADA of 1990 The VRA of 1965 Civil rights are policies that extend basic rights to groups historically subject to discrimination... These policies can come from many sources from CONGRESS Which can pass a ___________
But those laws mean Congress is telling private individuals and the states what to do? To “trump” under the supremacy clause, the must have either an enumerated or implied power to do so.. Commerce clause and the power to tax and spend... Oooh look it’s a power...
Civil Rights Act of 1964
Title II Outlawed discrimination in hotels, motels, restaurants, theaters, and all other public accommodations engaged in interstate commerce; exempted private clubs without defining the term "private." Title III Prohibited state and municipal governments from denying access to public facilities on grounds of race, religion, gender, or ethnicity. Title IV Encouraged the desegregation of public schools and authorized the U.S. Attorney General to file suits to enforce said act. Title VI Prevented discrimination by government agencies that receive federal funding. If an agency is found in violation of Title VI, that agency can lose its federal funding. Title VII Prohibits discrimination in employment on same basis--plus gender
.   Title IX, is a United States law enacted on June 23, 1972 that states: "No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance."Although the most prominent "public face" of Title IX is its impact on high school and collegiate athletics, the original statute made no reference to athletics Ooh ahh a power of the feds: tax and spend... AND an example MORE:
ADA of 1990 WHO: anyone with a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities, who has a record of such impairment or is regarded as having such impairment EMPLOYMENT: can not be denied employment or promotion if with "reasonable accommodation" they can perform the job. If "undue hardship”--employer off the hook. Applies to all private employers with 15 or more employees and all public entities, regardless of the size of their work force PUBLIC ACCOMODATIONS: disabled must enjoy "full and equal" access to hotels, restaurant, stores, schools, parks etc. Owners of existing facilities must alter to maximum extent feasible". New facilities must ensure that they are accessible unless impossible.
Voting Rights Act 1965 Echoing the language of the ____Amendment, the Act prohibited states from imposing any "voting qualification or prerequisite to voting, or standard, practice, or procedure... to deny or abridge the right of any citizen of the United States to vote on account of race or color." Specifically, Congress intended the Act to outlaw the practice of requiring otherwise qualified voters to pass ________ tests in order to register to vote, a principal means by which Southern states had prevented African-Americans from exercising the franchise
Civil rights are policies that extend basic rights to groups historically subject to discrimination... These policies can come from many sources from CONGRESS Which has enforcement power
13th Amendment, s. 2: Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation. 14th Amendment, s. 5: The Congress shall have power to enforce, by appropriate legislation, the provisions of this article. 15th Amendment, s.2: The Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation. Congress’s power to enforce civil rights comes from the
Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act: requires certain states with a history of racial discrimination in voting receive “pre-clearance” by either a federal court or the U.S. Department of Justice before making any changes to their voting laws. Shelby County v. Holder Section 4(b) defines the eligible districts as ones that had a voting test in place as of November 1, 1964 and less than 50% turnout for the 1964 presidential election. Such districts must prove to the Attorney General or a three- judge panel of a Washington, D.C. district court that the change “neither has the purpose nor will have the effect” of negatively impacting any individual’s right to vote based on race or minority status.
Question Does the renewal of Section 5 of the Voter Rights Act under the constraints of Section 4(b) exceed Congress’ authority under the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments, and therefore violate the Tenth Amendment and Article Four of the Constitution?
The Court ruled: So the ________ Amendment reserves powers to the states and constrains Congress...
11 th States can’t be sued under the employment discrimination part of the ADA Univ. of Alabama v. Garrett: More... Constraints on Congress stemming from our Federal system of Government Question May an individual sue a state for damages in federal court under the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990? No. In a 5-4 opinion delivered by Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist, the Court held that suits in federal court by state employees to recover money damages by reason of the state's failure to comply with Title I of the ADA are barred by the Eleventh Amendment
Section 1. Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of sex. Section 2. The Congress shall have the power to enforce, by appropriate legislation, the provisions of this article. Section 3. This amendment shall take effect two years after the date of ratification. The ERA The ERA was introduced into every session of Congress between 1923 and 1972, when it was passed and sent to the states for ratification. The seven-year time limit in the ERA's proposing clause was extended by Congress to June 30, 1982, but at the deadline, the ERA had been ratified by 35 states, leaving it three states short of the 38 required for ratification. It has been reintroduced into every Congress since that time. Oh is that a constraint due to our federal system35 statesthree states Of course, Congress could also start the process to ______ the constitution wow a power
Process of Amending the Constitution Constraints on Congress stemming from our Federal system of Government
The Civil Rights Movement Strategy: Non-violent protest of segregated society Movement’s tactic: Civil disobedience => – Greensboro “Lunch counter sit-in” (1960) –CORE Freedom Rides – summer of 1961=> Escalating violence –MLK & Birmingham protest march => violence Voter registration drives in South => violence Tactics serving strategy: Non-violent protesters attacked by police dogs on national TV –Nation’s reaction => impact on Congress? People can advocate for protection:
Social movements: a large group of people with a common ideology who try together to achieve social change—done outside of traditional intuitions like parties
amicus curiae brief - a brief presented by someone interested in influencing the outcome of a lawsuit but who is not a party to it legal brieflegal brief - a document stating the facts and points of law of a client's case https://www.amherst.edu/aboutamherst/news/news_releases/201 2/09/node/ Other ways the public can try to influence policy....
Presidents can impact civil rights Eisenhower does what? Is this an example of a power of the exec?
On May 17, 1954, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Brown vs. Topeka Board of Education that segregated schools are "inherently unequal." In September 1957, as a result of that ruling, nine African-American students enrolled at Central High School in Little Rock, Arkansas. The ensuing struggle between segregationists and integrationists, the State of Arkansas and the federal government, President Dwight D. Eisenhower and Arkansas Governor Orval Faubus has become known in modern American history as the "Little Rock Crisis." The crisis gained attention world-wide. When Governor Faubus ordered the Arkansas National Guard to surround Central High School to keep the nine students from entering the school, President Eisenhower ordered the 101st Airborne Division into Little Rock to insure the safety of the "Little Rock Nine" and that the rulings of the Supreme Court were upheld.
(1) President’s can use the “bully pulpit” John F. Kennedy addresses the nation about Civil Rights on June 11, 1963 Lyndon B. Johnson signs the Civil Rights Act of Among the guests behind him is Martin Luther King, Jr. (2) President’s legislative power: to sign bills A bully pulpit is a public office or other position of authority of sufficiently high rank that provides the holder with an opportunity to speak out and be listened to on any matter. The bully pulpit can bring issues to the forefront that were not initially in debate, due to the office's stature and publicity Another eg? Obama and end “don’t ask...” Oh my goodness, I spy powers and restraints
Executive Order enforces affirmative action for the first time Sept 1965 Issued by President Johnson, the executive order requires government contractors to "take affirmative action" toward prospective minority employees in all aspects of hiring and employment. Contractors must take specific measures to ensure equality in hiring and must document these efforts. On Oct. 13, 1967, the order was amended to cover discrimination on the basis of gender. (3) Presidents can use executive orders Hmm that looks like a power to me... Better define it though to show you get it Desegregating schools
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CR MONDAY, NOVEMBER 4, 1996 (202) TDD (202) JUSTICE DEPARTMENT TO DISPATCH FEDERAL OFFICIALS ACROSS THE NATION TO MONITOR TUESDAY'S ELECTIONS WASHINGTON, D.C. -- In an effort to protect the integrity of the voting process and to prevent the intimidation of minority voters across the country, the Justice Department will dispatch 328 federal officials to nine states for tomorrow's general elections. The states include Arizona, New Mexico, Utah, California, New York, Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi, and South Carolina. Under the Voting Rights Act, which protects the rights of Americans to participate in the electoral process, the Justice Department can send federal observers to areas that are specially covered in the Act. "Our democracy rests on the right to vote," said Attorney General Janet Reno. "The observers will help ensure that every American has a fair opportunity to cast their ballot." Protecting the Rights of Native Americans In Arizona, 64 federal observers will obtain information from polling locations in Apache and Navajo Counties to determine whether the counties are complying with the language minority provisions of the Voting Rights Act. Under the provisions, certain jurisdictions must provide language interpreters to Native American voters, where necessary. Navajo language interpreters are required in these counties. In New Mexico, 46 federal observers will monitor polling locations in Cibola, Sandoval and Socorro Counties. Observers will determine whether the counties are complying with an Indian language program that was established through previously-entered consent decrees for persons who speak the Navajo and Pueblo languages. The decrees resulted from lawsuits filed by the Justice Department. Another 17 officials will monitor polling locations in San Juan County, The bureaucracy (part of the executive branch—which has the power to enforce after all) can impact civil rights
October 2006: ABC news: The Department of Education is making it easier for schools to offer single sex classes and extracurricular activities or separate whole schools by gender. The Department says this will allow schools more flexibility but critics are threatening lawsuits. More Bureaucracy impacts:
Other ways our COMMANDER in Chief can impact civil rights In the summer of 1993, after months of negotiation with the Pentagon and an avalanche of criticism, President _______ announced a new policy that barred the Pentagon from asking military recruits or service personnel to disclose their sexual orientation. Popularly it was known as _______ _______ ______ ______
A congressional bill to repeal DADT was enacted in December 2010, specifying that the policy would remain in place until the President, the Secretary of Defense, and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff certified that repeal would not harm military readiness, followed by a 60-day waiting period.  A July 6, 2011, ruling from a federal appeals court barred further enforcement of the U.S. military's ban on openly gay service members.  President Barack Obama, Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta, and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Mike Mullen sent that certification to Congress on July 22, 2011, which set the end of DADT for S eptember 20, 2011  
Justice Dept. Reshapes Its Civil Rights Mission By NEIL A. LEWIS WASHINGTON, June — In recent years, the Bush administration has recast the federal government’s role in civil rights by aggressively pursuing religion-oriented cases while significantly diminishing its involvement in the traditional area of race. The federal government intervened in 2004 to permit the Rev. J. B. Barton to resume talks at a center for the elderly in Balch Springs, Tex. Rabbi Joseph Korf, left, and Arthur Eckstein, outside the synagogue in Hollywood, Fla., which a federal lawsuit forced local officials to permit The executive can set the tone for the bureaucracy:
States can impact civil rights Would that be states... In our FEDERAL system of govt? Are they CONSTRAINING the feds? HOW? Meaning HOW is that a result of FEDERALISM? Wallace standing against desegregation while being confronted by Deputy U.S. Attorney General Nicholas Katzenbach at the University of Alabama in “In the name of the greatest people that have ever trod this earth, I draw the line in the dust and toss the gauntlet before the feet of tyranny, and I say segregation now, segregation tomorrow, segregation forever”
James Meredith, center, is escorted by federal marshals (power of feds I’d say vis a vis the states) as he enters the University of Mississippi, in Oxford, in September Mr. Meredith was the first black student to attend Ole Miss, and his enrollment sparked riots by white students and residents that led to two deaths. The campus is the site of the first presidential debate on Friday.
Army trucks, carrying marshals in steel helmets, rolled across the University of Mississippi in September They were called in to enforce a federal court order to enroll Mr. Meredith at the previously segregated school. Chancellor Robert C. Khayat sees the presidential debate as an opportunity to supplant the image of the university that is most closely linked to civil rights-era violence. Are we noticing the powers of the different institutions in our sep or powers system? and how the diff institutions impact civil rights? The _______ can by making rulings that the constitution ensures civil rights, by interpreting laws to protect civil rights (or not) and by ordering other branches to provide civil rights. But only the ________ can enforce that order—the ______ can’t call out the army.
Left, someone glued the word "white" onto a sign greeting Ole Miss students days before Mr. Meredith arrived in September Right, the sign with the word removed.
Students surrounded the car carrying Mr. Meredith in October Since the arrival of Chancellor Khayat in 1995, black enrollment at Ole Miss has increased to 14 percent, from 5.8 percent.
Mr. Meredith being escorted on the first day of class by James McShane, chief United States marshal (who is part of which branch?).
Hoisting a Confederate flag, hundreds of Ole Miss students protested integration of the school in front of the registrar's office on Sept. 20, Mr. Khayat, a former Ole Miss football player, banned Confederate flags at football games, sparkling controversy that earned him death threats.
Right to petition the Government contains the due process clause (as a limit on states) Right to privacy specifically guaranteed Right to be free of unreasonable search and seizures contains the “takings clause” as a limit to eminent domain 14th 4th 5th Right to vote can’t be abridged on basis of gender 19th Banned poll taxes 24th Right to confront witnesses 6th first trick
Death penalty for juveniles involves the ____amendment 8th Selective incorporation uses the ____ ______ clause of the ______ amendment DP; 14 The ________ case found something in the constitution which means police officers have to inform suspects of their ____ and ____ amendment t rights Miranda 5 th and 6th True/false: the requirements of a grand jury indictment has been incorporated False Amendment which gives 18 year olds the right to vote 26th
outlawed slavery guarantees the right not to incriminate yourself Right to have the FEDERAL government treat you with due process Guarantees the right to a jury in a criminal case outlaws property as a qualification to vote contains the equal protection clause (as a limit on states) Right to practice your own religion your way contains the free exercise clause 13th 5th Trick 14th 1st Right to vote can’t be abridged on basis of Race 15th 6th
Civil rights are protected by the ___________ _____________ clause of the ___________ amendment The case from DC did not solve the question of whether the _______ amendment has been __________ “friend of the court briefs” The arm bands case was substantive or procedural DP?
Mapp incorporated the ________________ rule Texas v Johnson DP or EQ? Reynolds case Free exercise or establishment clause?
____: The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude. 2. The Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation. amendments that grant civil rights ____The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex. Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation. _____The right of citizens of the United States to vote in any primary or other election for President or Vice President, for electors for President or Vice President, or for Senator or Representative in Congress, shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or any State by reason of failure to pay any poll tax or other tax. 2. The Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation. _____: The right of citizens of the United States, who are eighteen years of age or older, to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of age. 2. The Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation. Note: these are NOT the Bill of Rights
More review examples Facts of the Case In 1994, while enrolled at Virginia Polytechnic Institute (Virginia Tech), Christy Brzonkala alleged that Antonio Morrison and James Crawford, both students and varsity football players at Virginia Tech, raped her. In 1995, Brzonkala filed a complaint against Morrison and Crawford under Virginia Tech's Sexual Assault Policy. After a hearing, Morrison was found guilty of sexual assault and sentenced to immediate suspension for two semesters. Crawford was not punished.... Ultimately, Brzonkala dropped out of the university. Brzonkala then sued Morrison, Crawford, and Virginia Tech in Federal District Court, alleging that Morrison's and Crawford's attack violated 42 USC section 13981, part of the Violence Against Women Act of 1994 (VAWA), which provides a federal civil remedy for the victims of gender-motivated violence. Morrison and Crawford moved to dismiss Brzonkala's suit on the ground that section 13981's civil remedy was unconstitutional. In dismissing the complaint, the District Court found that that Congress lacked authority to enact section under either the Commerce Clause or the Fourteenth Amendment, which Congress had explicitly identified as the sources of federal authority for it. Ultimately, the Court of Appeals affirmed.
Question Does Congress have the authority to enact the Violence Against Women Act of 1994 under either the Commerce Clause or Fourteenth Amendment?
Equal Protection Clause The United States Government argued that pervasive gender stereotypes and assumptions permeated state justice systems. It argued these forms of state bias led to "insufficient investigation and prosecution of gender-motivated crime, inappropriate focus on the behavior and credibility of the victims of that crime, and unacceptably lenient punishments for those who are actually convicted of gender-motivated violence." This bias, the government argued, deprived women of the equal protection of the laws, and the private civil remedy of VAWA was meant to redress "both the States' bias and deter future instances of gender discrimination in the state courts.“ The Court responded that, even if there had been gender-based disparate treatment by state authorities in this case, precedents such as the Civil Rights Cases limit the manner in which Congress may remedy discrimination, and require that a civil remedy be directed at a State or state actor instead of a private party. Such precedents, said the Court, prohibit only state action — i.e., action by state governments — and not private conduct. In other words, unequal enforcement of state laws caused by inaction is, by this interpretation, beyond the scope of the federal government's enforcement of the equal protection clause.
Conclusion No. In a 5-4 opinion delivered by Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist, the Court held that Congress lacked the authority to enact a statute under the Commerce Clause or the Fourteenth Amendment since the statute did not regulate an activity that substantially affected interstate commerce nor did it redress harm caused by the state. Chief Justice Rehnquist wrote for the Court that [i]f the allegations here are true, no civilized system of justice could fail to provide [Brzonkala] a remedy for the conduct of...Morrison. But under our federal system that remedy must be provided by the Commonwealth of Virginia, and not by the United States." Dissenting, Justice Stephen G. Breyer argued that the majority opinion "illustrates the difficulty of finding a workable judicial Commerce Clause touchstone." Additionally, Justice David H. Souter, dissenting, noted that VAWA contained a "mountain of data assembled by Congress...showing the effects of violence against women on interstate commerce."
Another “take race into consideration case” When state legislatures draw district lines, can they consider race and for what “compelling state interest?” Held: district lines drawn primarily for political reasons are not invalid simply because they are drawn with a consciousness of the district's racial composition (ie ok to take into consideration blacks vote democratic)
Background One plaintiff in the case was a white woman in Louisville whose son was denied a transfer to attend kindergarten in a school that needed more black pupils to keep its black population at the district’s required minimum of 15 percent. The other plaintiffs were Seattle parents who opposed the district’s “tiebreaker” system, which applies only to the city’s 10 high schools and is aimed at keeping the nonwhite proportion of their student bodies within 15 percentage points of the district’s overall makeup, which is 60 percent nonwhite. Parents v. Seattle and Meredith v. Jefferson Students at Ballard High School Question 1) Do Grutter v. Bollinger and Gratz v. Bollinger allow a school district to use race as the sole factor to assign high school students to public schools? 2) Can a student enrollment plan that requires each school's student population to be between 15% and 50% African-American meet the Fourteenth Amendment's requirement that racial classifications be narrowly tailored to a compelling government interest?
The Minority The Decision No and no. By a 5-4 vote, the Court applied a "strict scrutiny" framework and found Jefferson County's enrollment plan unconstitutional under the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. Chief Justice John Roberts wrote in the plurality opinion that "The way to stop discrimination on the basis of race is to stop discriminating on the basis of race." The Court acknowledged that it had previously held that racial diversity can be a compelling government interest in university admissions, but it ruled that "[t]he present cases are not governed by Grutter." Unlike the cases pertaining to higher education, Jefferson County's plan involved no individualized consideration of students, and it employed a very limited notion of diversity ("black" and "other"). Jefferson County's goal of preventing racial imbalance did not meet the Court's standards for a constitutionally legitimate use of race: "Racial balancing is not transformed from 'patently unconstitutional' to a compelling state interest simply by relabeling it 'racial diversity.'" The plans also lacked the narrow tailoring that is necessary for race-conscious programs. The Court held that Jefferson County's enrollment plan was actually targeted toward demographic goals and not toward any demonstrable educational benefit from racial diversity. Jefferson County also failed to show that its objectives could not have been met with non-race-conscious means. In a separate opinion concurring in the judgment, Justice Kennedy agreed that Jefferson County's use of race was unconstitutional but stressed that public schools may sometimes consider race to ensure equal educational opportunity Parents v. Seattle and Meredith v. Jefferson The Majority
this is a ________ ____________, not a _______ ____________ issue