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Civil Rights and Uncertain Liberties
- Someone else; I forgot their name...
Monday, November 26, 2012
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Six-year-old Ruby knew the lessons. She was to look straight ahead—not to
one side or the other—and especially not at them. She was to keep walking.
Above all, she was not to look back once she'd passed, because that would
encourage them. Ruby knew these things, but it was hard to keep her eyes
straight. The first day of school, her parents came, along with federal
marshals to keep order. And all around hundreds of angry white people
were yelling things like, "You little nigger, we'll get you and kill you."
Then she was within the building's quiet halls and alone with her teacher.
She was the only person in class: none of the white students had come.
As the days went by during that autumn of 1960, the marshals stopped
walking with her but the hecklers still waited. And once in a while Ruby
couldn't help looking back, trying to see if she recognized the face of
one woman in particular.
* Her family was also receiving threatening letters and phone calls, and
her father had been fired by his white employer.
- African Americans and Latinos started grassroots movements aimed at
gaining social and legal freedoms that they had been denied due to
racism and (in the South) segregation.
- Montgomery bus boycott after Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat
- Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr emerged as a civil rights leader
- Efforts ramped up in the 1960s
- Public became symathetic due to violent acts committed against forms of
nonviolent protest like sit-ins and Freedom Rides, as well as voter
Hernández v. State of Texas
(May 3, 1954)
- Ruled that all racial groups, including Mexican Americans, had equal
protection under the 14th Amendment
- Convicted of murder by an all-white jury
- Lawyers argued that non-whites had to be allowed to sit on a jury in order
for it to be impartial
Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka
(May 17, 1954)
- Eliminated "separate but equal" as being "inherently unequal"; overturned
Plessy v. Ferguson
- Doll test—children of all races preferred white dolls in a
study by Kenneth B. and Mamie Phipps Clark, which played a part in the
- Resistance and protests by white southerners in Little Rock, Arkansas
Civil Rights and other reforms
- President Lyndon B. Johnson passed the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the
Voting Rights Act of 1965
- Johnson's Great Society reforms involved tax cuts, education aid,
Medicare and Medicaid, preservation of wilderness, urban development,
and a war on poverty
- His reforms did not satisfy other groups like the LGBT community,
feminists, radical students, counterculture members, and dissidents
More Supreme Court Rulings
- Under Chief Justice Earl Warren, the SCOTUS made more progressive rulings
- Miranda v. Arizona—"Miranda rights"
- Gideon v. Wainright—states must provide public defenders
under the 6th Amendment
- Escobedo v. Illinois—suspects in criminal cases have a right
to counsel under the 6th Amendment; decided a year after
- SCOTUS also banned prayer in schools, expanded voting rights, and
- Young adults were unhappy with lack of reform progress
- Students for a Democratic Society
- Advocated direct action and "participatory democracy"
- Young Americans for Freedom
- Anti-"big government"; libertarian and anti-Communist values
- Members gained control of the Republican party in the 70's
- Catholics, who felt threatened, played a prominent role in its creation
- Free Speech Movement at UC Berkeley (a "bureaucratic monster")
- Police tried to remove a CORE recruiter; police car surrounded for 32 hours
- Counterculture–sex, music, drugs
- Rock revolution, iconified by the Beatles (no kidding)
- Woodstock – Summer 1969
- Counterculture in decline by this time
- Violence, organized crime, drug trade, sex crimes
- Much of hippie culture ended up being adopted by mainstream society