Litigation involving the Negro Race
The presence of a large number of persons of African descent within our bounds — different in origin, temperament, and physical appearance from the Teutonic stock among whom they dwell — has ever been a serious problem in the life of our republic. The organic law of the land has more than once felt the effect of this situation, a situation abnormal in a high degree. The influence of the negro on our constitutional development, though in a large measure negative, has been none the less potent. Constitutional Law in its very nature lies closest to the life of the people. It does not originate with the political doctrinaire. It has its roots deep in the social organism. It grows and changes as the people grow and change. And so in a society of mixed races, so widely different as Teuton and African, the organic law should be expected to express this peculiar condition of life which the forces of the past have bequeathed to us. But if under these circumstances it takes into account, not a condition of life, but a theory of life, we may expect to find the life of the people failing to conform to the constitutional ideal so expressed, no matter how noble and exalted such an ideal, in the abstract, may be.
KeywordsConstitutional Ideal State Citizenship State Court Equal Protection Negro Race
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