equal protection

noun

Definition of equal protection

: a guarantee under the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution that a state must treat an individual or class of individuals the same as it treats other individuals or classes in like circumstances

Examples of equal protection in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

The 14th Amendment ostensibly guarantees equal protection under the law. Stephanie Ebbert, BostonGlobe.com, "Women’s soccer wage fight revives battle for Equal Rights Amendment," 13 July 2019 Hazel had ruled in April to block the addition of the citizenship question, but found at the time that the voting rights activists failed to prove their equal protection rights were violated. CBS News, "Maryland judge rules sufficient evidence to reopen 2020 census case citing racial motives," 25 June 2019 Hazel had ruled in April to block the addition of the citizenship question, but found at the time that the voting rights activists failed to prove their equal protection rights were violated. Baltimore Sun, baltimoresun.com, "Maryland judge says census question might have discriminatory motive," 24 June 2019 Hazel had ruled in April to block the addition of the citizenship question, but found at the time that the voting rights activists failed to prove their equal protection rights were violated. David Mcfadden, Twin Cities, "Judge: Census question might have discriminatory motive," 24 June 2019 Specifically, the 13th Amendment abolished slavery, the 14th Amendment established due process and equal protection under the law, and the 15th Amendment prohibited denying the vote based on race, color or previous servitude. Lee Roop | Lroop@al.com, al.com, "Alabama’s six constitutions make historic trip to free in-state showing," 26 June 2019 From the end of Reconstruction into the 1960s, chief executives rarely took action to faithfully execute the equal protection clause of the Fourteenth Amendment when the rights of African Americans and other racial minorities were being violated. Michael Kazin, The New Republic, "The Impossibility of Impeachment," 10 June 2019 In his ruling, Judge Malcolm Howard said that the policy at the public charter school violated the equal protection clause of the U.S. Constitution because girls were treated differently than boys. Kayla Epstein, The Seattle Times, "Girls were made to wear skirts at school to ‘preserve chivalry.’ So they sued — and won.," 31 Mar. 2019 But now, a federal district judge has ruled that one of these laws, in Tennessee, violates the due process and equal protection clauses of the 14th Amendment to the Constitution. New York Times, "Being Poor Can Mean Losing a Driver’s License. Not Anymore in Tennessee.," 4 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'equal protection.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of equal protection

1868, in the meaning defined above

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8 Aug 2019

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The first known use of equal protection was in 1868

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More Definitions for equal protection

equal protection

noun

Legal Definition of equal protection

: a guarantee under the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution that a state must treat an individual or class of individuals the same as it treats other individuals or classes in like circumstances

called also equal protection of the law

— see also rational basis test, strict scrutiny, suspect classification

Note: The equal protection requirement of the Constitution protects against legislation that affects individuals differently without a rational basis for doing so. In reviewing claims of denial of equal protection, a court will uphold legislation that has a rational basis unless the legislation affects a fundamental right or involves a suspect classification, such as race. In such a case, the court will use a strict scrutiny standard of review and will strike down legislation that does not show a compelling need for discriminating.

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