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Norma asked in Arts & HumanitiesHistory · 9 years ago

how did the supreme court support civil rights during the 1970s ?

1 Answer

  • 9 years ago
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    1971: In Swann v. Charlotte-Mecklenburg Board of Education, the Court ruled busing was an appropriate legal tool for addressing illegal segregation of the schools.

    1971: In Griggs v. Duke Power Co., the Supreme Court ruled that Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act prohibits not only intentional job discrimination, but also employer practices that have a discriminatory effect on minorities and women. The Court held that tests and other employment practices that disproportionately screened out African American applicants for jobs at the Duke Power Company were prohibited when the tests were not shown to be job-related.

    1974: The rights of "Limited English Proficient" (LEP) students were greatly enhanced by the Supreme Court's ruling in Lau v. Nichols. The case involved a class-action suit brought by non-English-speaking Chinese students living in San Francisco, who alleged a violation of Title VI of the Civil Rights Act because only 1,700 of about 35,000 Chinese students in need of special English instruction were actually receiving it. The Court ruled that failing to accommodate LEP students' language needs is a violation of their right to a federally funded education free from national origin discrimination, and makes a "mockery of public education."

    1974: In Milliken v. Bradley, a case involving the Detroit metropolitan area, the Court effectively halted school busing at a city's borders. The Court's 5-4 decision blocked Detroit's city-suburb desegregation plan that would have involved busing across school district boundaries. Ignoring evidence of state governments' past and continuing involvement in housing and school segregation, the Court said that "local control" was an important tradition in education. The decision allowed for proof of "interdistrict violations," while placing heavy burdens on plaintiffs in future cases.

    1976: In General Electric Co. v. Gilbert, the Court ruled that firing or otherwise penalizing pregnant workers was not an unlawful form of sex discrimination under Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act. This decision was legislatively overturned by the Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978.

    1977: In Milliken II, the Court ordered the state of Michigan, along with the Detroit school system, to finance a plan to address the educational deficits faced by African American children. These deficits, the Court suggested, arose out of enforced segregation and could not be cured by physical desegregation alone. This decision eased in part the impact of denying interdistrict desegregation in Milliken I.

    1978: In Regents of the University of California v. Bakke, the Supreme Court ruled that the medical school's special admission program setting aside a fixed number of seats for minorities violated Title VI of the 1964 Civil Rights Act. At the same time, however, in an opinion written by Justice Powerll, it ruled that race could lawfully be considered as one of several factors in making admissions decisions. In his opinion, Justice Powell noted that lawful affirmative action programs may be based on reasons other than redressing past discrimination -- in particular, a university's educational interest in attaining a diverse student body could justify appropriate affirmative action programs.

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