Supreme Court strikes down affirmative action

The author of the definitive book on the 14th Amendment calls the Supreme Court decision an egregious misreading of the legislative history of the equal protection clause.

Speaking for Alabama State Black Chamber of Commerce at Alabama A&M in Huntsville

WASHINGTON–Black Money Worldwide-June 29, 2023–The U.S. Supreme Court returned to the philosophies of Dred Scott and Plessy v. Ferguson with a 6-3 ruling to ban affirmative action at Harvard University and the University of North Carolina.

John William Templeton, author of Citizenship for All: 150th anniversary of the 14th Amendment, called the decision an egregious misreading of the legislative history of the 14th Amendment, the most important political achievement of African-Americans, who voted in proportions of 90 percent in the elections of 1868 to protect their interests in personal and property rights.

Templeton, who served as a trustee at historically Black Stillman College in Tuscaloosa, AL, not far from the University of Alabama, recalls how Stillman accepted students who would have not been accepted by other colleges, most of them the first generation from the poorest section of the nation, and graduated them. Many then go on to graduate degrees and doctorates. “So the purported standards used at larger universities have no relationship with the actual ability of African-American students.”

He also noted that the late Gen. Colin Powell was a C student in college before rising to Chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and Secretary of State.

As a curriculum developer and textbook publisher for three decades, Templeton has published research that shows that the barrier to African-American students is the structure of education in the country, which Dr. Carter G. Woodson described as “The Miseducation of the Negro.” The failure to educate Black students in their own history is a major stumbling block, which is being escalated by new legislation putting the practice in stone.

In his book, Citizenship for All: 150th anniversary of the 14th Amendment, Templeton gives the proper context for the creation of the equal protection clause: “Slavery, by building up a ruling and dominant class, had produced a spirit of oligarchy adverse to republican institutions, which finally inaugurated civil war. The tendency of continuing the domination of such a class, by leaving it in the exclusive possession of political power, would be to encourage the same spirit, and lead to a similar result. Doubts were entertained whether Congress had power, even under the amended Constitution, to prescribe the qualifications of voters in a State, or could act directly on the subject. It was doubtful, in the opinion of your committee, whether the States would consent to surrender a power they had always exercised, and to which they were attached. As the best if not the only method of surmounting the difficulty, and as eminently just and proper in itself, your committee came to the conclusion that political power should be possessed in all the States exactly in proportion as the right of suffrage should be granted, without distinction of color or race.”

“The purpose of the equal protection clause was to the stop the violent attempts to prevent African-Americans from experiencing freedom given the public revulsion to the Memphis and New Orleans riots.   The Joint Reconstruction Committee took 11 volumes of testimony from every state that had seceded, which are the most unifying documents in our nation’s history, and found ‘vindictive and malicious hatred. This deep-seated prejudice against color is assiduously cultivated by the public journals, and leads to acts of cruelty, oppression, and murder…’ The same sentiments are being deliberately fomented by both wealthy manipulators and foreign operatives to reverse what the late Justice Thurgood Marshall spent 50 years undoing.”

The next step is to have Congress clarify the legislative history and prevent the Supreme Court from abridging the covenant with the people who saved the nation in its most trying challenge.  The Confederate states were compelled to comply with the 14th Amendment as a condition of readmission and have not.