Category Archives: Constitutional Law

Supreme Court Justice William Brennan

On October 15, 1956, President Eisenhower appointed William Brennan to the high court. On July 20, 1990, Justice Brennan retired after serving on the Supreme Court for over 33 years. In July 1997, he passed away, but his legacy lives … Continue reading

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On This Date in Legal History

On May 19, 1921, former Chief Justice Edward Douglas White passed away. He served on the United States Supreme Court for 26 years. He was the first Associate Justice to become a Chief Justice on the high court. More noteworthy, … Continue reading

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On This Date in Legal History

In 1890 the Louisiana legislature enacted a statute that required railroad companies to provide “for separate railway carriages for the white and colored races.”  The races weren’t permitted to sit together.  Any passenger who violated the law was subject to … Continue reading

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On This Date in Legal History

On May 17, 1954, the United States Supreme Court decided the case of Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka. The Court unanimously held that the doctrine of “separate but equal” is inherently unequal, so it ordered the integration of … Continue reading

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On This Date in Legal History

On February 7, 1946, Arthur Terminiello delivered a controversial speech at a Christian Veterans of America meeting. In response to the views he expressed, protesters threw rocks, stones, and bricks that broke windows and doors. The police were unable to … Continue reading

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On This Date in Legal History

Gerald Gault and a friend allegedly made an obscene phone call to a neighbor. On June 8, 1964, both boys were taken into custody. After a hearing Gerald was committed to the State Industrial School until he was 21. His … Continue reading

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On This Date in Legal History

Chae Chan Ping, a Chinese immigrant, lived and worked as a laborer in San Francisco from 1875 until 1887. In 1887 he returned to China for a visit. Prior to leaving he obtained a certificate that confirmed his right to re-enter … Continue reading

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On This Date in Legal History

On May 10, 2010, President Obama nominated Elena Kagan to the United States Supreme Court. The Senate confirmed her nomination by a vote of 63-37. See the Senate Roll Call at http://goo.gl/sCXFAA. On August 7, 2010, she was sworn in as … Continue reading

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Remembering Mary Church Terrell

Mary Church Terrell was an African-American civil rights activist. She fought to desegregate Washington D.C. In 1949, when she and others visited a segregated popular restaurant, John R. Thompson Co., Inc., they refused to serve those who weren’t white. A … Continue reading

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The 27th Amendment

On May 7, 1992, the 27th Amendment to our Constitution was ratified.  The Amendment reads– “No law, varying the compensation for the services of the Senators and Representatives, shall take effect, until an election of Representatives shall have intervened”. Simply … Continue reading

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On This Date in Legal History

On May 6, 1882, President Chester A. Arthur approved the Chinese Exclusion Act. You can view the original document at http://1.usa.gov/1mzgAVr, and learn how this law restricted Chinese immigration by visiting our Pinterest page at https://goo.gl/pEVlSq.

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On This Date in Legal History

On May 5, 2014, the United States Supreme Court decided Town of Greece v. Galloway. The Court (in a 5:4 decision) held that reciting a prayer before a town meeting doesn’t violate the Establishment Clause of the Constitution. Read more about … Continue reading

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On This Date in Legal History

In 1951 an all-Anglo grand jury indicted Pete Hernandez for murder in Jackson County, Texas, and then an all-Anglo petit jury found him guilty. Hernandez was of Mexican descent, so his attorneys attempted to quash both the indictment and jury … Continue reading

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On This Date in Legal History

In 1924 the Virginia State Colony for Epileptics and Feeble Minded facility sought to forcibly sterilize Carrie Buck under the state’s eugenics sterilization law. She and her mother, Emma, were under the state’s care, and Carrie allegedly had a child who was, … Continue reading

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Happy Law Day!

This year we’re celebrating the 14th Amendment.  If you want to learn more go to http://bcove.me/hzscwv75 and  https://goo.gl/EzNUly.

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On This Date in Legal History

On April 29, 1745, Oliver Ellsworth was born. He was a respected lawyer, a judge on the Connecticut Supreme Court, he served in the Continental Congress, he helped draft our Constitution, was a member of the U.S. Senate, he played … Continue reading

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On This Date in Legal History

Taxpayers sued New York City’s Board of Education in order to challenge a policy that permitted students to leave school during the day to attend religious instruction elsewhere. No public funds were used and no religious instruction took place on … Continue reading

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Get Ready for Law Day on May 1

Every year Law Day is celebrated on May 1. Celebrate the day by playing               LAWSUIT!™ board game. LAWSUIT!™ teaches how laws impact our everyday lives, how our courts work, and what it’s like to … Continue reading

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On This Date in Legal History

A high school student was arrested and charged with violating the Gun-Free School Zones Act of 1990 after bringing a (concealed) handgun and 5 bullets into his school. He moved to dismiss his indictment arguing the law was unconstitutional because … Continue reading

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On This Date in Legal History

In 1935 Lillian and William Gobitas were expelled from their elementary school after they refused, on religious grounds, to salute the American flag and recite the Pledge of Allegiance. A lawsuit ensued on their behalf by their father. The legal … Continue reading

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