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Fourteenth Amendment and Brown Vs Board Of Education

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    The majority of the morals and values we have as adults, we learned from our parents when we were children and while we were growing up. It is a parent’s responsibility to raise their children to love themselves and others and treat others kindly. Parents are a major influencing factor for children, as well as their teachers. Unfortunately, even when some parents do raise their children right, there are still outside influences. Some people grew up to believe that races should be separate. Racism is very much still alive whether we choose to address it or turn a blind eye to it. America has contributed to a lot of racism starting with the constitution. However, this is where cases like Brown vs. Board of Education that helped pave the way to make major improvements and changes for people of color. The Browns, an African American family who moved to Kansas, wanted their daughter Linda to attend an all-white school that was close to their home. However, during that time in the 1950s segregation laws in many states banned black and white children from attending school together. Linda was not able to be admitted into a white elementary school. Linda’s father, Oliver Brown, did not take that as a final answer and challenged Kansas’s school segregation laws in the Supreme Court. Prior to this case, almost 60 years earlier in Plessy vs. Ferguson, the “separate but equal” standard was set. This term meant that racially separate facilities, if equal, did not violate the Constitution. On May 17, 1954, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Earl Warren delivered the unanimous decision in the landmark civil rights case Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas.2

    Furthermore, the defense was the Topeka Board of Education. The Topeka Board of Education did not win the case. The decision made it so that states that participated in segregation in public schools were required to turn in a proposal for getting rid of segregation by within a year.3 Due to the anticipated reaction, the decision did not really come with a solid plan. While many schools took the decision the right way and reacted peacefully, others put on protests opposing the decision which ended up needing the required the National Guard’s assistance3. To think that people would go through all this to fight against uniting children and their education is astounding.

    Additionally, under the Fourteenth Amendment, keeping children and people separate based on race was assumed to deprive the plaintiffs of the equal protection of the laws. After hearing that the cases ruled in favor of the school boards at U.S. District Court, the plaintiffs appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court. In 1952 when the cases came before the Supreme Court, the Court combined the five cases under one name – Brown v. Board of Education. The court case which was initially named after Oliver Brown, Linda Brown’s father, the first of many plaintiffs (total of 13) in the Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas case. Thurgood Marshall, the head of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund and attorney, argued on the side of the plaintiffs before the Supreme Court.2 Robert L. Carter, Thurgood Marshall’s assistant, and Jack Greenberg, the first White attorney for the NAACP, also helped argue the case. This momentous decision was actually the resolution of five different segregation cases combined under the name Brown v. Board of Education.

    It should be noted that upon meeting to decide the case, the Supreme Court Justices were deeply divided over the issues raised. This divide was a reflection of the real world. However, most did want to reverse Plessy vs. Ferguson and declare segregation in public schools to be unconstitutional.1 With the case of Brown v. Board of Education, Earl Warren stated that, state-sanctioned seclusion of public schools was a violation of the 14th amendment and was unconstitutional. When the decision was made, not everyone was pleased which is obvious. The ruling was a major success for the plaintiffs and those in not in favor of “separate but equal”. This case overturned a previous case and worked to unify people. It also helped change the systematic racism in the United States. In order to see change, people as a whole have to make changes. Brown vs. Board of Education ignited change and that is why the plaintiff side won.

    Brown vs. Board of Education signified a pivotal time in the Black children from desegregated schools when compared with Black children from segregated schools, are more likely later: to attend and finish four-year, majority-white colleges, law schools, and business schools, to live in interracial neighborhoods and to have somewhat higher incomes. In turn, white products of interracial schools have more positive attitudes toward Blacks than comparable Whites from segregated schools1. Still some people have mixed feelings about the effects of Brown vs. Board of Education. Yet, one thing for certain is you cannot change facts. Prior to the Brown case, roughly one in 40 African Americans obtained a degree from college. Now, more than one in five African Americans have earned their degree. Brown vs. Board of Education made it the law to have equal opportunity in the education. Education is the foundation for success. With these educational progresses, African Americans become more prosperous and educated, improving Black lives.

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    Fourteenth Amendment and Brown Vs Board Of Education. (2021, Nov 13). Retrieved from https://graduateway.com/fourteenth-amendment-and-brown-vs-board-of-education/

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