THE REAL BEGINNING OF JIM CROWIn spite of the passing of the Thirteenth Amendment and the Fourteenth Amendment, the two Constitutional add-ons that were meant to level the playing field for America’s minorities and former slaves, things still weren’t very equal. In 1875, however, the Civil Rights Act was narrowly passed in order to insure that the South’s former slaves were properly integrated into American society. Then, in 1883, the Supreme Court ruled 8-1 that the Civil Rights Act of 1875 wasn’t Constitutional, because, a) the Thirteenth Amendment protected citizens from institutional slavery, but not institutional bigotry, and b) that the Fourteenth Amendment guaranteed minorities the right to Federal equality, but the states had their own say on how everything else was handled. In short, the Federal government washed its hands of the nation’s minorities for the next several decades until the Supreme Court stepped in once more to make things right.
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