Brown Vs. Board Of Ed Essay, Research Paper
Brown Vs. Board of Education
Through out history there have been many pivotal court cases that have forever altered towns , states , and even some that have altered the history of countries. Amongst these cases which have altered the history of countries Brown vs. Board of Education stands. Like anything pivotal there are many elements involved within the issue, background, and the impact of the decision. In Brown Vs. Board of Education there are three main points involved which made it so pivotal, the issue with which it was based, the historical background, and the after affect it had on the south .
“Before 1954 most public school systems in the south- and some in the north as well-were racially segregated”(Tackach 8). Although the basis for the case was that the school systems were racially segregated and unequal. The root of this is found both further back in the past and also right up until the supreme court had reached its verdict. The historical basis for this was ” A case called Plessy Vs. Furguson” (Goldish 40) which stated ” That there could be ” separate but equal” facilities for both blacks and whites”(Goldish 40).Theoretically this works, thought in practice ” The obvious purpose of segregation laws was to keep African Americans-the children and grandchildren of slave owners-in an inferior position in American society”(Tackach 8). Further
reinforcing the inequality of “separate but equal” was the fact that “No black schools were equal to white schools”(Patrick 49).
Another aspect of Brown Vs. Board of Education which helped contribute to it being a successful and therefor pivotal case was that historical background to the case. Part of the historical background to the case is what caused Mr. Brown and Mrs. Brown to sue the Board of Education. They were suing the “School board for denying their Eight-year-old daughter , Linda , admission to a school only 5 blocks from the house…solely because she was black”(Patrick 48). Although they had seemingly what was legally right on their side along with that the “NAACP provided these parents with legal help”(Patrick 48). This proved to be a substantial help to the Browns because the “NAACP legal counsel successfully argued a number of Supreme Court cases”(Patrick 48).
The end result of the case was that “Separate but equal” was in actuality not equal at all and that at least one part of the 14th amendment which allowed ” separate but equal” facilities , was overturned. Now that the case was done though there was much more to be done before the decision carried out in full. While trying to enforce this new decision there was much resistance encountered coming form the south. Events such as “Southern public officials encouraged resistance to the Supreme Court decision”(Baum 185 ) and the “Southern members of Congress”(Baum 48) signing a ” Southern Manifesto that attacked the Brown decision”( Baum 48). These are just some examples of the south resistance to the Brown decision. Though there were more severe actions
taken by some other southern states. ” For example, Prince Edward county, Virginia, closed all of its public schools”(Patrick 49). This caused many problems between the
Supreme Court and Virginia which took a long time to resolve. Though these are significant impacts which the decision had on the country there is one major impact that the result of this case brought out. That is ” As a result of this ruling, other civil rights changes soon followed. The supreme Court declared that there could not be any segregated buses, hotels, restaurants, movie theaters, elevators, or other public places”(Goldish 40).
In conclusion Brown Vs. Board of Education has greatly impacted this country like few other court cases have. Without this case civil rights as we know may not be the same and the case proves that no matter what the situation justice will eventually lead Americas laws back to its basic credo that “All men are created equal”.
Baum, Lawrence . The Supreme Court. United States: Congressional Quarterly, 1981
Goldish, Meish . Our Supreme Court. Connecticut : The Millbrook Press, 1994
Patrick, John J . Supreme Court Of The United States. New York: Oxford University Press, 1998
Tackach, James. Brown V. Board of Education. San Diego, California : Lucent Books, 1998