United States v. Stanley

U.S. Case Law

Legal Definition of United States v. Stanley 

popularly The Civil Rights Cases, 109 U.S. 3 (1883), declared private acts of racial discrimination beyond the reach of federal jurisdiction, thus invalidating the Civil Rights Act of 1875. Various attempts had been made by private parties to test the provisions of the 1875 law under circumstances involving privately owned but publicly operated facilities (e.g., inns, public conveyances, places of amusement). In finding against supporters of the law, the Court ruled that the Constitution prohibited only state-sponsored, not private, discrimination. Despite a strong dissent by Justice John Marshall Harlan, the decision would not be overturned until the landmark Heart of Atlanta Motel v. United States ruling in 1964.

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