A Maxim of Justice: Its Birth and Rebirth

George P. Fletcher

in Our Secret Constitution

Published in print March 2003 | ISBN: 9780195156287
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780199872169 | DOI:
A Maxim of Justice: Its Birth and Rebirth

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This chapter asserts that the U.S. traces the principle of equality to the idea that human beings were created in God's image, and discusses the evolution of the doctrine of equal protection via Supreme Court opinions as various as Chief Justice Roger Taney's in Dred Scott, and the oft‐cited Yick Wo. The author also discusses, at length, Justice John Paul Stevens’ gradual shift from an advocate of equality as status quo to equality as an active, “hands‐on” principle, as in the case of affirmative action.

Keywords: affirmative action; Chief Justice Roger Taney; equal protection; equality; Justice John Paul Stevens; Dred Scott; Supreme Court; U.S.A; Yick Wo

Chapter.  8775 words. 

Subjects: US Politics

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