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Plessy Vs. Ferguson Separate Treatment Be Equal Treatment? worksheet mini lesson

Plessy Vs. Ferguson Separate Treatment Be Equal Treatment? worksheet mini lesson
Plessy Vs. Ferguson Separate Treatment Be Equal Treatment? worksheet mini lesson
Plessy Vs. Ferguson Separate Treatment Be Equal Treatment? worksheet mini lesson
Plessy Vs. Ferguson Separate Treatment Be Equal Treatment? worksheet mini lesson
Product Description
Can Separate Treatment Be Equal Treatment?
Plessy Vs. Ferguson (1896)


Background:
The Fourteenth Amendment, passed during Reconstruction in 1866, guaranteed equal rights to all citizens. By 1890, civil rights and racial equality were not significant issues for whites in the North and South. Already, the Supreme Court was handing down decisions that overturned Reconstruction legislation and encouraged racial discrimination.

Plessy v. Ferguson is a U.S. Supreme Court case from 1896 that upheld the rights of states to pass laws allowing or even requiring racial segregation in public and private institutions such as schools, public transportation, restrooms, and restaurants.


The Facts The Issue The Decision
• In 1890, Louisiana passed a law allowing railroads to provide “separate but equal” facilities.

• Homer Plessy, an African American, sat in the car reserved for whites.

• He was arrested when he refused to move to the “colored” car. In his appeal to the
Supreme Court,
Plessy argued that
The Separate Car Act
violated the Fourteenth
Amendment. A 7 to 1 majority
declared that state
laws requiring separate but equal accommodations
for whites and blacks did not violate the Fourteenth Amendment.



WHY IT MATTERS
The majority of the Supreme Court reasoned that the Constitution was not intended to protect social equality of race. This interpretation allowed southern states to make laws requiring separate but equal facilities. These racial discrimination laws, known as Jim Crow laws, lasted nearly 60 years before the Court reversed its decision in Brown v. Board of Education (1954). In this case, the Court ruled that separate but equal facilities violated the Fourteenth Amendment.


CONNECT TO YOUR WORLD/ TASK
What does it mean to be treated equally? Are there instances where separate treatment is equal treatment? Consider the following situations. Decide what is equal treatment for the individuals in each case. Discuss your conclusions with the rest of the class.

• Two students enter their high school. One of them is confined to a wheelchair.

• Twelfth graders are required to pass algebra in order to graduate. One student has a documented learning disability in math; the other does not..

Task:
Analyze how people with different points of view have responded to the decision.

Write an editorial agreeing or disagreeing with Chief Justice Charles Fenner’s decision/ position. Give support from your notes and knowledge of the Era.


Total Pages
2 pages
Answer Key
N/A
Teaching Duration
N/A
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