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32 Cards in this Set

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  • Back
Plessy v. Ferguson
1/8 black man tries to sit in a white section on a railroad car and is not allowed because there is state sponsored segregation

He claims the 13th and 14th amendment rights

Majority- you have to treat people equally, but you can treat them differently.

Famous dissent- the goal of segregation is to keep different races from white people, we need a colorblind constitution
Brown v. Board of Education
Class action suit

Determined separate is inherently unequal

the court dances around the idea that they were wrong in plessy, dont actually overturn plessy

pyschological studies


brown II- integrate with speed
Swan v. charlotte-Mecklenburg
2/3 of black kids were attending 99% black school- they believe the answer was cross county busing

Majority- Burger- The Court held that busing was an appropriate remedy for the problem of racial imbalance among schools, even where the imbalance resulted from the selection of students based on geographic proximity to the school, rather than from deliberate assignment based on race.
Milliken v. Bradleyy

wanted to integrate 54 schools in and around detroit

5-4 decision

Burger wrote majority

No intentional segreation, no segregation in 53 school systems

reorganizing denies local control

put limitations on Swann

The Court held that "[w]ith no showing of significant violation by the 53 outlying school districts and no evidence of any interdistrict violation or effect," the district court's remedy was "wholly impermissible"
Reed v. Reed
Richard Reed died, and hiso parents were fighting over his estate

Male parents are favored, by law, to receive the estate

Ruling- gender preference in a class system is not allowed under equal protections

the classification must be reasonable, in order to use, not arbitrary

Unanimous decision- must return to lower courts to decide estate beased on something other than gender

dministrators of estates cannot be named in a way that discriminates between sexes.
United States v. Virginia
VMI- leadership institute for males

Ginsburg- majority- if one woman wants to go and is qaulified, she should be allowed to go

no public single sex schools

women are equal under the 14th

Created "equal" school VMIL- deemed unequal- doesnot pass the intermediate scrutiny test
San Antonio v. Rodriquez
School districts are not eqaully funded

Majority- local funding by taxation is okay because they are not targeting by class

wealth isnt the same thing as race and does not fall under equal protection

education is not a fundamental right
University of California v. Bakke
there was a quota system for minorities at UC

REVERSE discrimination

powell used the strict scrutiny test

dual admission tracks violate equal protection

diverse classrooms are important; admission now allows for a look into background including race, but it cannot be a deciding factor (Harvard Test of Plus)
Grutter v. Bollinger
Not a quota but a "critical mass" for a law school

The Law School was justified in it's actions

upheld affirmative action admissions at the University of Michigan Law School

o connor hoped that in 25 years affirmative action would be obsolete
Mapp v. Ohio
Dolrey Mapp's house was entered (looking for a hardbored bomb fugitive) without a search warrant and the police found pornography, which violated Ohio's Anti Pornography Law


The SC ruled that the police had a bad warrant and the Ohio Law was unconstitutional

The Fourth Amendment prohibition against unreasonable searches and seizures, as applied to the states through the Fourteenth, excludes unconstitutionally obtained evidence from use in criminal prosecutions

Should be able to have pronography according to the 1st amendment free speech
Schenck v. US
the burning of draft cards

they said the draft violated their 13th amendment right to no slavery

Majority- Holmes- cannot regulate sppech, but you can regulate action

when speech becomes actions and the gov't could nomally regulate it, they can and should

based on whether he had the 1st amendment right to do so

because it created a clear and present danger to the enlistment and recruiting practices of the U.S. armed forces during a state of war.

clear and present danger test
Exclusionary Rule
evidence that is illegally obtained without a warrant cannot be used within a court of law
Gideon v. Wainwright
Charged with robbery, forced to act as his own council

the Supreme Court unanimously ruled that state courts are required by the Sixth and Fourteenth Amendments to the Constitution to provide lawyers in criminal cases for defendants unable to afford their own attorneys

Justice Black

upheld Powell, overturned Betts

No one should be denied counsel
Texas v. Johnson
Burning of the American flag in protest

flag burning was illegal in 48 states

State has an interest in pursuing public peace, safety, and promoting nationhood

Court ruled that symbolic speech (that has no imminent threat of lawless action) is protected by the 1st amendment

A Texas statute that criminalized the desecration of the American flag violated the First Amendment
New York Times v. US
The New York Times was publishing classified information known as the Pentagon Papers

Per curiam decision- the government hasnt met justification for prior restraint

Many different opinions on this case- some absolutist who beleive that the first amendment has no restrictions (black and douglas), (stewart and white) think the president should determine how classified information is
New York Times v. Sullivan
NYT issues a false advertisement about peaceful protest meant by police violence

Filed for libel with malice (assumed)

Majority- many factual errors must establish malice in order to establish libel

black and dougle concurring- state should regulate libel money laws, speech is absolute.

The First Amendment, as applied through the Fourteenth, protected a newspaper from being sued for libel in state court for making false defamatory statements about the official conduct of a public official, because the statements were not made with knowing or reckless disregard for the truth.
Miller v. California
Roth Test- defintion of obscenity is based on community standards

reiterated that obscene material was not protected by the 1st aemdnment

Miller had a mass advertising campaign for the sale of adult books

Established the 3 prong miller test
1. defines community standard
2.define in law what is obscene
3.whether it lacks value
Everson v. Ewing
state law allowed busing to parochial and public schools

Black- busing is okay because it is not a religios practice and children need to get to school safely

dissent- accepting aid means regulation

Establishment Clause Case

validated the law because they were not establishing a religion
Engel v. Vitale
it is unconstitutional for state officials to compose an official school prayer and require its recitation in public schools


New York Required prayer
Lemon v. Kurtman

Nonpublic Elementary and Secondary Education Act- provided secular books to private schools

State aid church

violated the Establishment clause of the First Amendment

Lemon Test
1. The government's action must have a legitimate secular purpose;
2. The government's action must not have the primary effect of either advancing or inhibiting religion;
3. The government's action must not result in an "excessive entanglement" with religion
Wallace v. Jaffree
Alabama Law requiring a moment of silent meditation or voluntary prayer

struck down the law based on the lemon test

a moment of silence is constitutional but a prayer is religious

concurring- no secular purpose
Edwards v. Aguillard
LA Balance Treatment Act- if you want to teach evolution you must teach creation

Struck down the law in a 7-2 decision

History indicates it narrows science teaching, does not grant teachers flexibility, discriminates against evolution supporters, forbids discrimination on creation scientists

attempts to advance a particular religion
Wisconsin v. Yoder
Amish took their kids out of school

6-1 decision

The kids did not need education past eighth grade because it was counterproductive to their lifestyle, negatively impacts their religious belief

up to parents to decide

they are still educated after schooling for the life they live

states have an interest in education for commerce, but the Amish do not affect commerce

Dissent- depriving children of their rights

Lambs Chapel v. cEnter Moriches
Schools could rent out space after hours

Lambs Chapel wanted to rent out space for a family values, child rearing in a religious perspective class

Freedom of speech, not establishment according to the Lemon Test
Rosenberger v. University of VA
Students wanting to fund a christian publication

denied funding- claimed viewpoint discrimination

no direct money contract, contract vague

freedom of speech was violated
Santa Fe v. Doe
Prayer at Football Games

The school claimed private speech, secular purpose, non mandatory attendance, isn't ripe

Court ruled:
Not private speech because it is a public school, the voting process was bad because minorities were silenced, prayer will be seen as endorsed by the state, does not foster freedom of expression, the game is mandatory for some groups, worries aboput erosion of the establishment clause, violates the lemon test
Buckley v. Valeo
1. limited the amount of money a candidate could spend on campaign
2. restricted the size of individual contributions
3. full disclosure of contributions and expenditures
4. provided for public financing of presidential campaigns
5. created the Federal Election Commission

upheld the provisions of the act dealing with public financing, the presidents power to appoint FEC, and limitations on campaign contributions

congress can limit contributions, but not expenditures

struck down limits on spending of own money
Near v. Minnesota
Public Nuisance Law- prohibiting certain types of publications that were considered scandalous or defamatory

The Saturday Press charged certain public officials with failing to crack down on mob crime

immunity from prior restraint exists as long as it is not classified information, entirely obscene, or overrthrowing the government

prior restraint allowed only in rare cases
Miranda v. Arizona
rape and killed, question until confessed- no rights given

Right to a lawyer in confession, many are not aware

Discourages against police brutality

confession is voluntary

you do not have to prove your own innocence

everyone needs to know their rights

stated the rights so the police knew what to say
Lovell v. Griffin
Liberty of free press not limited to news papers or periodicals

Georgia law banned distributing of leaflets without a permit

Struck down ordinance as prior restraint on the press
Sherbert v. Verner
Held that denial of unemploment benefits to a Seventh Day Adventist for refusal to work on saturday, violated the Free Exercise Clause; established compelling interest test- state must have a compelling interest before any state could limit religious freedom
Sweatt v. Painter
using the separate but qual doctrine, ruled unconstitutional racially segregated facilities in state university legal education
applied to UT, rejected on racial grounds