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The Way to Stop Discrimination on the Basis of Race . . .

44 Pages Posted: 11 Apr 2015  

Ronald Turner

University of Houston Law Center

Date Written: April 9, 2015

Abstract

Chief Justice John G. Roberts, Jr. and Justice Sonia Sotomayor have expressed differing views on the “way to stop discrimination on the basis of race.” Chief Justice Roberts, in the Supreme Court’s 2007 Parents Involved decision, stated: “The way to stop discrimination on the basis of race is to stop discriminating on the basis of race.” Justice Sotomayor, in the Court’s 2014 Schuette decision, stated: “The way to stop discrimination on the basis of race is to speak openly and candidly on the subject of race, and to apply the Constitution with eyes open to the unfortunate effects of centuries of racial discrimination.” This Article examines the Justices’ disagreement on this important subject. As discussed herein, Chief Justice Roberts’s race-based approach focuses, in acontextual and ahistorical ways, on racial classifications and race as color or phenotype. Justice Sotomayor’s racism-based analysis is cognizant of the harmful effects of this nation’s contextual and historical discrimination against racial minorities. This Article concludes that Justice Sotomayor’s position provides the best avenue for those interested in reaching the “stop discrimination” destination.

Keywords: Constitution, equal protection, race, racism, discrimination, Roberts, Sotomayor, Parents Involved, Schuette

Suggested Citation

Turner, Ronald, The Way to Stop Discrimination on the Basis of Race . . . (April 9, 2015). 11 Stanford Journal of Civil Rights and Civil Liberties 45 (2015); U of Houston Law Center No. 2015-A-8. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2592570

Ronald Turner (Contact Author)

University of Houston Law Center ( email )

4604 Calhoun Road
Houston, TX 77204-6060
United States

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