The Warren Court and American Politics

By Lucas A. Powe Jr. | Go to book overview

chapter 11
After the Civil Rights Act

In 1961 African-American students in Columbia, South Carolina, and Baton Rouge, Louisiana, marched downtown in orderly fashion, carried placards protesting discrimination, and sang the “Star Spangled Banner” while attracting a large crowd of white onlookers before the police ordered the demonstrators to disband. In 1963, in Edwards v. South Carolina, the Court stated that “the circumstances of this case reflect an exercise of these basic constitutional rights in their most pristine and classic form.” In 1965, in Cox v. Louisiana, the Court stated that the case did not involve speech “in its pristine form but with conduct of a totally different character” and proceeded to detail some of the dangers of “mob” rule. One could easily be amazed at how such similar protests produced such a drastic change in tone, but that was the prelude to a changed message. Cox emphatically “rejectfed] the notion… that the First and Fourteenth Amendments afford the same kind of freedom to those who would communicate ideas by conduct such as patrolling, marching and picketing as these amendments afford to those who communicate ideas by pure speech.”


Mass Demonstrations

The ease with which Stewart’s opinion had reversed the Edwards breach of the peace convictions was gone in Cox (which consisted of two docketed cases with the identical name). One factor may have been numbers. Edwards had involved under 200 demonstrators; Cox involved 2,000, although only the leader of the demonstration, the Reverend Elton Cox, was charged with violations of the law and no arrests were made on the day of the demonstration. Another factor stemmed from the Louisiana law. In addition to breach of the peace, Cox was convicted of violating

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The Warren Court and American Politics
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Illustrations ix
  • Preface xi
  • Chapter 1 - The Supreme Court, 1935–1953 1
  • I Beginnings the 1953–1956 Jerms 19
  • Chapter 2 - Brown 27
  • Chapter 3 - Implementation 50
  • Chapter 4 - Domestic Security 75
  • Chapter 5 - Glimpses of the Future 104
  • II Stalemate the 1957–1961 Jerms 125
  • Chapter 6 - Domestic Security after Red Monday 135
  • Chapter 7 - Little Rock and Civil Rights 157
  • Chapter 8 - The Transition 179
  • III History's Warren Court the 1962–1968 Terms 207
  • Chapter 9 - To the Civil Rights Act 217
  • Chapter 10 - Revamping the Democratic Process 239
  • Chapter 11 - After the Civil Rights Act 272
  • Chapter 12 - Freedom of Expression 303
  • Chapter 13 - The End of Obscenity? 336
  • Chapter 14 - Church and State in a Pluralist Society 358
  • Chapter 15 - Policing the Police 379
  • Chapter 16 - Policing the Criminal Justice System 412
  • Chapter 17 - Wealth and Poverty 445
  • IV the Era Ends 463
  • Chapter 18 - The Last Year 467
  • Chapter 19 - What Was the Warren Court? 485
  • Chronology 503
  • Notes 511
  • Bibliography 533
  • Index of Cases 539
  • General Index 549
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