The History Of Racial Profiling And The Fourteenth Amendment

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Racial Profiling
Out of the nearly three hundred million people in the United States, the number of Americans that reported to have been profiled due to their race was thirty-two million in 2004, approximately the population of Canada (“Racial Profiling and the Use of Suspect Classification”). Racial profiling happens when a law enforcement official targets an individual based on their race or ethnicity. But racial profiling violates the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment, which states that, “All persons born or naturalized in the United States and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges
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When the Constitution was written in 1787, the framers did not reach a consensus on the issue of slavery and the power of the federal government in proportion to the powers of the states (McWhirter 2). Therefore, owning slaves was not unconstitutional because the law regarding slavery was not found in the Constitution. If the federal government was unhappy with slavery, they could do nothing about the matter because the powers of the federal government relative to the powers of the state government were very vague and up for interpretation. It was not clear if the states even had to follow the orders of the federal government. Therefore, racial profiling was frequent and there was no higher power to stop it. The Thirteenth, Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendment are the Reconstruction Amendments, written the five years following the Civil War. “[T]he Thirteenth Amendment gave Congress the authority to [punish the South and ensure the rights of former slaves]” but the power of Congress was questioned and “[b]ecause of these doubts, Congress passed the Fourteenth Amendment in 1866” (McWhirter 6). Doubts surrounding the Thirteenth Amendment was another factor in the creation of the Fourteenth Amendment. The issues that the Constitution had not addressed previously had become very apparent and was no longer avoidable in America. The Thirteenth and Fourteenth …show more content…
The catalyst for the landmark Brown v. Board of Education case of 1954 was laws that allowed or requested schools to be racially segregated, justifying segregation by stating that all the “buildings, curricula, qualifications and teacher salaries” were identical (“Brown”). This was destructive to a child of color because schools sent the message that black children were inferior to white children. When taught from a young age that there are differences within people due to their ethnicity, the gap between races widens and the problem never solved. As many more people of different ethnicities come into this nation, it is important their children feel cared for, as they will become the next leaders of the world. The Equal Protection Clause is a valuable statement as schools and America become more diversified. After Brown v. Board of Education, schools became desegregated and black students were allowed to enroll into the school of their because the court ruled that segregation within schools breached the Fourteenth Amendment (Brown). The school district used race as a factor as to which students would receive a better education. Schools were not equal when black and white students were required to attend different schools. The Equal Protection Clause was deemed a valuable sentiment by the Brown v. Board of Education case because children of different races were given equal footing concerning education, and the

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