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U.S. House Democratic Leader Jeffries marks 70th anniversary of landmark desegregation case

May 17, 2024 Brooklyn Eagle Staff
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CAPITOL HILL — HOUSE DEMOCRATIC LEADER HAKEEM JEFFRIES, who serves Brooklyn’s 8th Congressional District, on Friday commemorated the 70th anniversary of the landmark 1954 Supreme Court decision in Brown v. Board of Education, which ended school segregation, and was decided on May 17, 1954. Chronicling the history of desegregation, Rep. Jeffries pointed out that Brown v. Board of Education struck down the earlier “separate but equal” doctrine established in another prominent case, Plessy v. Ferguson, involving a legally-Black railway passenger, and decided ironically on May 18, 1896.  The Supreme Court ruled in Plessy that segregation did not violate the Constitution if separate treatment did not imply the inferiority of African Americans. Rep. Jeffries pointed out on Friday that, “Following the ruling, children simply attempting to attend school were met by violent, racist mobs and local officials sued in federal court to keep their districts segregated. Now, the most segregated school systems in America can be directly traced to policies put in place by opponents of integration in the aftermath of the ruling.”

Jeffries also credited the Biden administration and Education Secretary Cardona for the “important progress toward school desegregation efforts across the nation, though we still have a long way to go.”

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