Chapter 18 Section 1 Plessy v. Ferguson (1896) • The Supreme Court's decision in the case of Plessy v. Ferguson (1896) had declared segregation to be constitutional with a separate but equal policy. • Laws that segregated African Americans were allowed as long as African Americans had equal places. De Facto Segregation • Areas without laws that required segregation often had de facto segregation, which was based on custom and tradition. Benefits of the New Deal • African Americans who benefited from FDR's New Deal programs gave the Democratic Party new strength in the North. CORE • In the 1940s, members of the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) began using sit-ins, a form of protest. • Sit-ins staged by members of CORE successfully integrated many restaurants, theaters, and other public facilities in Chicago, Detroit, Denver, and Syracuse. Thurgood Marshall • From 1939 to 1961, the NAACP's chief counsel and director of its Legal Defense and Education Fund was the brilliant African American attorney Thurgood Marshall. Video Summary of Brown v. BOE Linda Brown • Linda Brown, an African American student from Topeka, Kansas wanted to attend a white school very near her house. • However, Linda’s parents were told that their daughter had to attend a black school about 45 minutes from her house. • Marshall and the NAACP represented the Brown family against the Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas. Brown v. Board of Education (1954) • In Brown v. Board of Education (May 1954), the Supreme Court ruled that segregation in public schools was unconstitutional and violated the equal protection clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. • The ruling signaled to African Americans that it was time to challenge other forms of segregation. Attitude of the White Southern • The Brown decision also upset many white Southerners. • Many ignored the Supreme Court’s ruling and kept schools segregated for years. • Many states adopted pupil assignment laws that created an elaborate set of requirements other than race to prevent African Americans from attending white schools. Southern Manifesto • In 1956, a group of 101 Southern members of Congress signed the Southern Manifesto, which denounced the Supreme Court's ruling as “a clear abuse of judicial power”. Rosa Parks • On December 1, 1955, Rosa Parks, a seamstress, was arrested for refusing to give up her seat on a bus to a white man in Montgomery, Alabama. • She challenged bus segregation in court. African Americans in Montgomery quickly started a boycott of the bus system. • In the next few years, boycotts and protests spread across the nation. Montgomery Bus Boycott • The Montgomery bus boycott marked the beginning of the civil rights movement among African Americans. • The boycott was a success. • Some African American leaders formed the Montgomery Improvement Association, which worked with city leaders to end segregation. MLK • The MIA chose the young (26 year old) minister, Martin Luther King, Jr., to lead the group. Nonviolent Approach • The leader of the Montgomery bus boycott, Martin Luther King, Jr., believed that the only moral way to end segregation and racism was through nonviolent passive resistance. • This approach was based on the ideas of Mohandas Gandhi. • A powerful speaker, King encouraged his listeners to disobey unjust laws. U.S. Supreme Court • The Supreme Court decided Rosa Parks’ case in 1956. • It said that Alabama’s bus segregation laws were unconstitutional. Churches • The Montgomery bus boycott could not have succeeded without the support and encouragement of the African American churches in the city. • People met at churches to plan and organize protest meetings. SCLC • The Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) was an organization formed in 1957 to eliminate segregation from American society. MLK & SCLC • King was the SCLC’s first president. • The SCLC set out to end segregation in America. • It also pushed African Americans to register to vote. • The group challenged segregation of public transportation and other public places. President Eisenhower • President Eisenhower personally opposed segregation. • But he disagreed with those who wanted to end it through protests and court rulings. • President Eisenhower believed that segregation and racism would end when people's values changed. • He believed that segregation should end gradually. Ike’s Thoughts • Eisenhower thought that the Supreme Court’s decision in Brown v. Board of Education was wrong. • However, he also thought that the federal government had the duty to uphold the decision. Little Rock 1957 • In September 1957 the Little Rock, Arkansas, school board won a court order to admit nine African American students to Central High School. • The governor of Arkansas ordered troops from the Arkansas National Guard to prevent the nine students from entering the school. Sending in the Army • President Eisenhower sent 1,000 soldiers to Little Rock, Arkansas to end mob violence protesting school desegregation. • Eisenhower ordered U.S. Army troops to Little Rock to protect the students and to uphold the law. Civil Rights Act of 1957 • In the same year that the Little Rock crisis took place, Congress passed the Civil Rights Act of 1957. • The Civil Rights Act of 1957 protected the rights of African Americans to vote. • The law created a civil rights division within the Department of Justice. • It also created the United States Commission on Civil Rights to investigate instances in which the right to vote was denied.