The Supreme Court said, "Laws which keep the races apart do not mean that one race is better or worse than the other" but in reality, that was exactly what it meant. Blacks were soon seen as a second-rate race, and this was not only in the South. Although Northern states had no official Jim Crow laws, racism spread throughout the whole country. In 1916, US President Wilson, the most powerful man in the world, said, "Segregation is not humiliating and is a benefit for you Black gentlemen," - he clearly had no idea how blacks felt, but they couldn't tell him. Protesters complained to the White House, but their pleas fell on deaf ears. What a difference from the words of George Washington 150 years before - "All men are created equal".
So the 'separate but equal' description of the living conditions of a black American was one that rarely accurately portrayed the life of these people. In the South, they were definitely separated, completely isolated usually, but they were by no stretch of the imagination equal. They had to live in a world where everything they had was inferior to what the whites next door might have, where they