Jim Crow Laws

655 Words 3 Pages
After the Civil War, black people were freed and became citizens, but they did not have the same rights as white people. “The Jim Crow Laws were statutes enacted by Southern states, beginning in the 1880s that legalized segregation between African-Americans and whites” (American Historama). “The Jim Crow Laws were not just a law that separated whites and blacks, but it was also “a way of life” (David Pilgrim). These laws made life for African-Americans extremely difficult; the next paragraph will describe how difficult life was for them.
African-Americans were citizens of the United States, but they did not have the same rights as white Americans. “Also the laws restricted the rights of African-Americans to use public facilities, schools, vote,
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“In “Plessy v. Ferguson” (1896) the Supreme Court held that Jim Crow-type laws were constitutional as long as they allowed “separate but equal” facilities. The “separate but equal” requirement eventually led to widespread racial discrimination” (New World). This Supreme Court ruling made separation and segregation legal in the United States. “In 1890, Louisiana passed the "Separate Car Law," which purported to aid passenger comfort by creating "equal but separate" cars for blacks and whites. The Louisiana law made it illegal for blacks to sit in coach seats reserved for whites, and whites could not sit in seats reserved for blacks” (David Pilgrim). This is one example of many state laws that allowed discrimination and segregation of African-Americans. “Newspaper and magazine writers routinely referred to blacks as nigger, coon and darkies” (David Pilgrim). These very disrespectful names for African-Americans were common until very recent years and perpetuated racial discrimination. “A black male could not offer his hand (to shake hands) with a white male because it implied being socially equal. Obviously, a black male could not offer his hand or any other part of his body to a white woman, because he risked being accused of rape” (David Pilgrim). Blacks and whites were not allowed to touch each other. There were many similar laws like these that tried to keep blacks and whites

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