Culture War and The Supreme Court

Luke McDowell

Walz V. Tax

In 1970 Walz v. Tax was case before the United States Supreme Court. The Court held that grants of tax exemption to religious organizations do not violate the Establishment Clause of The first amendment. Under this provision, exemptions from taxation may be granted only by general laws. Exemptions may be altered or repealed except those exempting real or personal property used exclusively for religious, educational or charitable purposes as defined by law and owned by any corporation or association organized or conducted exclusively for one or more of such purposes and not operating for profit. This made it so that government had less control over religious organizations.

Alexander V. Holmes

United States Supreme Court Case in 1969 in which the Court ordered immediate desegregation of Public schools in the American South. It followed 15 years of Delay to integrate by most southern school boards after the Courts ruling in Brown v. Board of Education (1954) that segregated schools were unconstitutional. The petitioners, Beatrice Alexander and others suing the Holmes County Board of Education in Mississippi for failure to desegregate, were represented by Jack Greenburg. They asked the Court to order the original HEW plans to be implemented, and proposed that the Court shift the burden of proof, making desegregation the main objective of plans.

Lau V. Nichols

Civil Rights case in 1974 that was brought by Chinese American students living in San Francisco, California who had limited English proficiency. The students claimed that they were not receiving special help in school due to their inability to speak English, which they argued they were entitled to under Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 because of its ban on educational discrimination on the basis of national origin. Finding that the lack of linguistically appropriate accommodations effectively denied the Chinese students equal educational opportunities on the basis of their ethnicity, the U.S Supreme Court in 1974 ruled in favor of the students, thus expanding rights of students nationwide with limited English Proficiency.

Van Orden V Perry

United States Supreme Court case in 2005 involving whether a display of the Ten Commandments on a monument given to the government at the Texas state capitol in Austin violated the establishment clause of the first amendment. in October 2004 the high court agreed to hear the case at the same time as it heard McCreary County v. ACLU of Kentucky, a similar case challenging a display of the Ten Commandments at two county courthouses in Kentucky. The Supreme Court ruled on June 27, 2005, by a vote of 5 to 4, that the display was constitutional. Chief Justice William Rheinquiest delivered the plurality opinion of the Court; Justice Stephen Breyer concurred in the judgment but wrote separately. The similar case of McCreary County v. ACLU of Kentucky was handed down the same day with the opposite result (also with a 5 to 4 decision).

Two Supreme Court Justices Likely to Resign

I chose Antonin Scalia and Anthony Kennedy due to the fact they they are both the oldest members of the supreme court at 78 years old each. Scalia has been described as the intellectual anchor for the originalist and textualist position in the Court's conservative wing. So without his the conservative/Republican side of the court would lose a key member who has a lot of experience and whose vote weighs very much. Kennedy has often been the swing vote on many of the Court's 5–4 decisions. So without Kennedy whatever new justice that would be put in would take his place as a swing voter, so depending on the political standpoint of a new justice would affect laws passed by The Supreme court immensely.