Discrimination Towards Minorities When Buying Home

1896 words - 8 pages

Today everyone has the right to own land, a home, and start a family of their own otherwise known as the American Dream. Unfortunately this was not always the case as blacks, Hispanics, and other minorities were discriminated upon in the early 60’s to the late 80’s and even still today.
The Fifth, Thirteenth, and Fourteenth amendment are supposed to be in place to treat everyone with equality. From our own declaration “all men are created equal” (Jacobus, 412), these amendments are in place to protect our rights and keep us safe. The Fifth Amendment states that no person shall….. “Be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law….” (Jacobus, 412) However even though we have these laws here to protect us discrimination once plagued our country because of a person’s color, race, or religion. Throughout our history there were many instances of this unfairness, for example “Jones v. Alfred H. Mayer Company.” (Jacobus, 412) This case was a huge breakthrough in the fight against discrimination saying that any form of discrimination is a “badge of slavery” (Jacobus, 412) which is a direct violation of the Thirteenth Amendment. “The Supreme Court stated that in enforcing the Civil Rights Act of 1866, Congress is empowered under the Thirteenth Amendment to secure all citizens the right to buy whatever a white man can buy and the right to live wherever a Whiteman can live” (Jacobus, 412). Another historical event that changed the way real estate is handled was the case of Shelley v. Kraemer. This was about Caucasians wanting to impose a deed restriction that only allowed white people to hold deed to land. The State courts granted the motion but the Supreme Court reversed it saying “the action of state courts in imposing penalties deprived parties of their substantive right, without due process of law, to have access to housing.” (Jacobus, 413) This case paved the way for how State courts base their decisions with the passing of the “equal protection” clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. This clause “prohibit the judicial enforcement by state courts of restrictive covenants based on race or color.”(Jacobus, 413) In addition to the modifications that were made to our Amendments, federal laws were passed in order to prohibit discrimination in housing. The first of these is called the Civil Rights Act of 1866. This act states “All citizens of the United States shall have the same right in every State and Territory, as is enjoyed by the white citizens thereof to inherit, purchase, lease, sell, hold, and convey real and personal property.”(Jacobus, 413) The Supreme Court, in 1968 affirmed that the Civil Rights Act of 1866 prohibits all discrimination private and public in the sale of real property. Another pivotal law that helped gain fair and equal rights among Americans is known as the Fair Housing Act. The Fair Housing Act created protected classes, which are classes of people that by law are protected from discrimination (Blacks,...

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