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Political & Civil Rights
University of Mississippi School of Law
Alexandre, Michele

Political and Civil Rights
Prof. Alexandre
Fall 2009
Introduction to the American Race Problem
I.   Formal Equality Opportunity:
a.   Segregation- government supported subordination and stigmatization
b.   Desegregation- The formal removal of such constraints
c.   Integration- racial mixing
d.   Separation- voluntary racial isolation for self-support
                               i.   While FEO clearly repudiates segregation and embraces desegregation, it is at least debatable whether it necessarily embraces integration and rejects separation
II.Civil Rights Perspectives
a.   Classic Liberalism- holds that our current approach to civil rights (FEO) is sound in concept
b.   Traditionalist- believe that FEO, specifically its racial integration and racial omission, or color blind, tenets, is conceptually and operationally sound
c.   Reformists- argue that FEO is conceptually sound but operationally flawed
                               i.   Had the vision right but the way it is implemented is wrong
d.   Oppositional Theories- hold that FEO is conceptually unsound
                               i.   Critical Theorists- assert that FEO is conceptually unsound and never mind about its implementation, because it is “objective” (it presupposes that the socio-legal order is naturally neutral as to matters of race, gender, and sexual orientation when, in fact, it is not.
1.   Look at the foundation of FEO and it is an illusion that does not exist
2.   Looks to reconstruct the FEO concept
                             ii.   Limited Separatists- argues that FEO is conceptually flawed because it fails to distinguish between racial separation and racial segregation.
1.   Integration should not be forced but rather voluntary separation might be necessary
2.   Three pronged Test to guide courts in determining the legality of particular expressions of limited separation:
a.   First, the group employing limited separation must be able to demonstrate a need to create a supportive environment free of debilitating racial or gender subordination
b.   Second, institutions that operate under limited separation must grant access to individuals form outside the group, so long as these individuals are willing to support

o discharge any individual, or otherwise to discriminate against any individual with respect to his compensation, terms, conditions, or privileges of employment, because of such individual’s race, color, religion, sex, or national origin; or
(b)          To limit, segregate, or classify his employees or applicants for employment in any way that would deprive or tend to deprive an individual of employment opportunities or otherwise adversely affect his status as an employee, because of such individual’s race, color, religion, sex, or national origin.
b.   42 U.S.C. § 2000e. Definitions
                               i.   (b) The term “employer” means a person engaged in an industry affecting commerce who has 15 or more employees for each working day in each of twenty or more calendar weeks in the current or preceding calendar year, and any agent of such person, but such term does not include