It is hard in this time and age to be able to imagine a world of segregation of a people or a color, but that it happened in the time of our fathers is more amazing. There were many factors that lent themselves to the Supreme Court case involving segregation. Probably one of the more key factors that aided NAACP, was the appointment of a new Chief Justice. He was the governor of California at the time and was appointed by Eisenhower, but had it not been for the NAACP and Thurgood Marshall the case would have never gone to any court.
The original plea that the NAACP made was based on the fact the school system of South Carolina needed more busses for one of their black schools. The NAACP claimed that under the law this was separate but not equal. They did however throw in, as almost a foot note, the fact of segregation as a whole was unconstitutional.
The first trial in South Carolina the plaintiffs brought their case to the judge immediately caught the fact that in South Carolina if you are dealing with a constitutional issue such as segregation it requires a three-judge panel. The decision was one of a 2-1 split in which the state ruled against the plaintiffs. There is an interesting point to be made here. Had the judge just left the plaintiffs case as it was and ruled solely on the fact of separate but equal, the case would have died right there in the court house in South Carolina. I think this is the thing that made this movie unique. Not so much that the judge caught what they were trying to do, but that he forced the issue. He could have just let it slide and not created flack, but he choose to make a difference. So many times it came down to the actions of one person that kept the case going. It started with principal/pastor in his hope to get just one school bus for his students. It carried on to the parents of the little boy that signed the petition. After that it was each individual parent and member of the community that signed the petition for the NAACP to bring a case to South Carolina. The judge in their first case that forced the issue of segregation, and possibly most of all Chief Justice Warren, that led the fight behind closed doors to unite the court and end segregation. I feel that these are the greatest triumphs of the movie, in that one person can and did make the difference. It took just one person to stick his or her neck out for something that they believed in to bring about change. What so many people do not realize is that even if you cannot cause the change yourself it sets off a chain reaction of events that cannot be helped or stopped. That was the message that I took away from this movie, that through the power of one, change is possible. Bibliography:
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