Analysis Of Brown V. Board Of Education

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Following the groundbreaking and overwhelmingly momentous Supreme Court ruling in Brown v. Board of Education, the “separate but equal” policy was officially held unconstitutional. While many celebrated the decision as a testament to upholding racial equality, Southern white nationalists were not so thrilled with the decision. Thus, they created and submitted the Southern Manifesto, a legislative document condemning Brown as a violation of the balance of constitutional power between the nation and states. Moreover, in the Manifesto legislators contended that the “separate but equal” policy had become a “way of life” (Southern Manifesto on Integration) for the United States and that this decision “destroyed the amicable relations between …show more content…
However, Strauss responds to this first argument by explaining that the “separate but equal” policy was not successful or fundamentally sound, rather, legally and practically it had been on the decline for decades. Specifically, Strauss explains that with Supreme Court case after case, the courts realized that determining what was equal in separate facilities was difficult in itself, but also they were encountering several cases such as McCabe, in which black law students were forced to attend school out of state, in which state government were explicitly exploiting separate but equal policies to provide the same opportunities to blacks but certainly not equal opportunities in quality. Thus, what we see is that clearly these separate but equal policies were not simply a way of life and not a testament to amicable relations between blacks and whites. On the contrary, separate but equal policies were left “hanging by a thread” (Strauss) due to the progression of Supreme Court cases ruling constitutional statutes invalid because of the lack of equal opportunity for blacks and whites. This difference in quality of …show more content…
First, Strauss compares Brown to MacPherson, a case in which the legal principle of inherently dangerous objects warrant a valid products liability claim was destroyed and replaced. Prior to the MacPherson case, product liability cases were decided by the inherently dangerous object precedent. This means that if the defective product was seen as inherently dangerous, you could hold the manufacturer liable for damages. This principle began in the Winterbottom case of 1842, but as case after case was determined, the differentiation between inherently and not inherently dangerous was blurred. Defective steam boilers were regarded by the court as ordinary objects while aerated water was seen as inherently dangerous. To the courts, it was evident that this principle was widely criticized and failed to work as the definition of inherently dangerous was so subjective and vague. Thus in the MacPherson case, Justice Cardozo scrapped the inherently dangerous policy and replaced it with the foreseeable negligence clause. The Brown decision, Strauss responds has similar parallels and thus is not a never before seen overstepping of judicial power. In the Brown case, we observe a civil rights legal

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