American History Of Segregation And Intimidation And Racism
Racial segregation in the United States meant segregation of facilities, services, housing, education, employment and transportation based on race. Segregation was a way to legally and socially separate the African Americans in the United States, but it also encompassed other racial and ethnic minorities.
Legal racial segregation was enforced by law but was finally stopped by the federal government after a series of decisions by the Supreme Court beginning in 1954. However, legal segregation in the US lasted right until the end of 1970s.
In 1867, the Congress passed the Reconstruction Act, the Fifteenth Amendment to the US constitution in 1870 ensured the right to vote while the Civil Rights Act of 1875 forbid racial discrimination when it came to accommodation. In the South, blacks were assured the right to vote and elect their political leaders by the federal occupation troops.
However, the Southern Democrats did not want the blacks to vote so they violence and intimidation. Ku Klux Klan, a white supremacist group, terrorized black political leaders as a way to undermine the Republican Party. Many blacks were killed for trying to exercise their rights to vote and for attending school.
After the compromise of 1877, all federal troops were withdrawn from Southern states and this marked the ending of Reconstruction. The end of Reconstruction saw African Americans, both in the South and North, being oppressed by white mobs and also by segregation. In fact, racial segregation became the law in most parts of Southern America and this continued until the Civil Rights Movement. Democratic governments in the South separated people based on race and the African Americans were accorded second-class citizen, thus promoting white supremacy.
Although Northern part of America did not see any formal racial segregation, African Americans were not allowed in certain neighborhoods nor were they allowed to take up certain jobs.
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