Separate but Unequal Laws

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The New Jim Crow laws have been held as a system, which, by custom and law perpetuates enormous racial castes, which have been tied at the bottom of racial ladder. The system of racial caste is not something new in the society. Both the emergence of the New Jim Crow laws and slavery are systems of racial caste. The system of racial caste has evolved under historical circumstances of change. Different eras have challenged the system of racial castes thus losing its equilibrium and creating an existential crisis for the literate whites. In order for the racial caste system to regain equilibrium, it must adapt to the manipulations of resentments and fears of working class and poor whites. The initial New Jim Crow law was adapted from the era of reconstruction where Africans were enslaved. They have been presented as a violation of the revolution of Civil Rights. By regaining its equilibrium, the system of racial caste cannot be achieved by explicitly referring to the supremacy of the white people (Woodward, 16).

Laws that were enacted by Jim Crow in the United States history enforced the segregation of race. This took place during the final period of formal reconstruction in 1877 and at beginning of rights civil movement that had a lot of strength that happened in 1950s. Jim Crow was named after the minstrel routine that had its performance in the beginning 1828. The name was used in referring to blacks and segregation (Kennedy, 33). In the 1870s, state legislatures of South America had no power to control men who had been set free and laws governing white persons were enacted to be separated from people with different colors in course of public transport and not forgetting schools. For anyone who traced their origin from black ancestry was considered to be of different colors. The principle of segregation was put to practice in many places, which included cemeteries, parks, restaurants and theatres to do away with any mixing of blacks and whites that perceived the two races to be equal. The equal but separate policy was passed by the supreme court of America and was practiced at the state and local levels.

The Supreme Court did a reverse of the law concerning the segregation of race in public schools and made a declaration that it was very unconstitutional. The ruling made by the Supreme Court was also put to practice in other facilities meant for the public. In the years that followed, other laws that had been proposed by Jim Crow had the same review (Woodward, 56). The Jim Crow laws were mostly enacted in the 1880s to 1960s. Many of the States in America adopted these laws. In fact, people were being punished for having mixed with the different race. This saw intermarriages being burned and businessmen ordered to not include the blacks in their businesses. The New Jim Crow law states that:

  • Railroads for the train conductors; they were required and authorized to designate every passenger to their required car or car division that was usually done according to race. There were car divisions and cars for both whites and the other races in every train.
  • Restaurants; it was considered unlawful to operate a restaurant where whites were served the same food and at the same room with other races. They were required to have a partition to separate the two races. The entrance to the restaurant was also to have a separation for whites and the other races.

Laws enacted by Jim Crow emerged following 1800-1866 codes that previously had placed restrictions on civil liberties and civil rights for African Americans that included no pretense for equity.  Schools that were state sponsored; segregation became unconstitutional by a ruling that was made by the supreme court of America. This took place in 1954. After reviewing other laws of Jim Crow, they became overruled. The 1964 Civil Rights Act and 1965 Act for voting rights were responsible for overruling the Jim Crow laws (Kennedy, 49).

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