Discrimination: Crash Course Government and Politics #31

Discrimination: Crash Course Government and Politics #31

Hi, I’m Craig. And this is Crash Course:
Government and Politics. And today we’re going to try to wrap up the incredibly fun and
uplifting subject of equal protection and discrimination. Because if you thought the fourteenth amendment
only protected racial and religious minorities and maybe women to some degree, then you’ve underestimated the power of what I call the most important amendment to the Constitution. – Typical leftie nonsense. You haven’t even mentioned the second amendment, the one that gives us the real power to protect ourselves from government overreach. If you’re a member of a well-regulated
militia, you mean. Right? Oh! Hey guys. Haven’t seen you in a while. That’s because you CAN’T STAY ON TOPIC! [Theme Music] Given that the Supreme Court has decided that the
fourteenth amendment applies mainly to discrete and insular minorities, it makes sense that various ethnic groups should be protected against discrimination. After all, you can’t control who your parents are or what country they come from. If you can, you’re a time-traveller. And you should probably use your time-travelling skills to do better things. Like, end World War II or something. As long as you are born here, or naturalized,
you are a citizen and entitled to the same treatment as other citizens and no one is supposed
to discriminate against you. That being said, historically there are certain ethnic groups that have been targets of unfair treatment. Notably, Asians and Latinos. Let’s start with Asians, as they’ve been the victims of actual federal discrimination. In 1882, Congress created the “Chinese Exclusion Act.” One of the first federal laws aimed specifically at immigrants. It effectively closed the door on immigrants from China. Later immigration quotas had the effect of discriminating against Southern and Eastern Europeans. And if you read the newspaper from the time, that was clearly their intent but they didn’t single out any particular group like the “Chinese Exclusion Act” did. In fact, it was an Asian-American who helped establish that the 14th Amendment Citizenship Clause applied to people born in the US. In Wong Kim Ark v. U.S., the Court ruled that American citizenship is based on being born here, not the citizenship or nationality of one’s parents. This meant that Chinese people who were born in the US were entitled to the rights of anyone born here. Although in the late 19th Century, when the case was decided, this number was pretty small. A closely related topic that applies to many ethnic Americans has to do with language. Whether America should adhere to an English-only standard is controversial and not something that I want to get into right now. But it is true that people who don’t speak English as their primary language, even if they’re born and raised here, can face discrimination. Especially in the political process. This is why voting guides appear in multiple languages in many states. Another Supreme Court Case, Lau v. Nihcols established that school districts have to provide education for students whose English is limited. They can’t simply teach in English and disenfranchise those kids who could learn if they received instruction in their native language. As you can imagine, this is also controversial on a number of levels. But as in the Brown v. Board of Education case, here we again see how the Court didn’t want to create barriers in education, because this would have long-term negative consequences. So it’s pretty clear that the 14th Amendment Equal Protection Clause applies to anyone born in the U.S., but what about immigrants to this country? What legal protections against discrimination do they have? The answer depends on if you’re talking about people who immigrated here legally, or illegally. Let’s go to the Thought Bubble. Okay, the terminology surrounding immigrants is complicated and highly politicized, and I’m not going to get into whether or not we should be calling people “undocumented” or “aliens”. But I’m gonna draw a line and say that a person, no matter how he or she got here, can’t be illegal. That just doesn’t make sense. Anyway: People who emigrate to the US following immigration rules and regulations generally are entitled to the same rights and privileges as citizens, except they
are not allowed to vote unless they become citizens. Those who immigrated here without following the rules, and thus violated U.S. law, do not have nearly the same protections. Although they do have some. They’re usually eligible for medical and educational services, although not for other social services. At times, states have tried to limit the privileges of this subset of immigrants. For example: California’s proposition 187 attempted to take away all social services, exceptfor emergency medical care, for those who emigrated unlawfully, although
most of its provisions were struck down by the courts. And sometimes federal immigration policy can lead to more discrimination. For example: the 1986 Immigration Restriction and Control Act tried to push the cost of immigration enforcement onto employers by making them responsible for background checks on job applicants’ immigration status. Rather than risking fines, employers just discriminated against all immigrants, regardless of their legal status. Maybe you’re thinking that we shouldn’t care about undocumented immigrants’ rights since, almost by definition, they aren’t citizens and therefore
might not be entitled to protections. However, when we remember that the basic principle behind equal protection is that the courts will step in to protect groups that are unable to defend themselves from the legislative process, then it makes some sense that the courts would look closely at cases involving immigrants, who for the most part, can’t work to change policies by voting. Thanks, Thought Bubble. There’s one more ethnic group in the U.S. that gets special treatment in the Constitution, and for good reason, Native Americans. Since they were here long before the framers of the Constitution, they’re the only group mentioned by name in the document. Unfortunately, the Constitution itself doesn’t actually clarify how they are to be treated, and their legal status has changed a lot over the past 250 years or so. Originally Native Americas were not considered citizens of the U.S. but rather of their own sovereign nations, the territory of which the U.S. kept purchasing… well, often stealing… from them. Since 1924 Native Americans have been granted citizen’s rights, and so they also get full protection under the 14th Amendment. But tribes also get special consideration in the territory where they are sovereign. Which is why, for example, Indians can operate casinos in states that don’t allow casino gambling. Numerically, Native Americans constitute a “discrete and insular minority”, so it makes sense that the 14th Amendment Equal Protection Clause would apply to them. In many cases, they are also a linguistic minority, so the Lau decision applies too. The laws concerning Native Americans are really, really complicated, and tied up in a pretty shameful history. We don’t have time to go into detail about them here, but it’s important that you know that they are one of the groups that are discriminated against and can receive special consideration in court decisions. So far we’ve looked at how the 14th Amendment protects groups that are almost always numerical minorities, except women of course, and usually consist of people who share immutable characteristics, although the courts also include religious groups here too. But there are other groups who are discriminated against, and Congress has stepped in to help them as well. One such group is people with disabilities. Even trying to describe this group can be tricky, because some disabilities, like missing a limb, are pretty much permanent. At least for now. While others are not. Many people are born with an attribute that much of society considers a disability, while others develop them as the result of accident or disease or from other factor. Many people who study disability point out that most of us will become less and less able to function in some way over time. It may become harder to walk. Or to see. Or to hear. And so it’s better to think of ourselves as “temporarily abled”. I thought of the eagle as temporarily tabled. And even calling someone who is blind disabled implies a societal value judgement that the person in question, or others like them, might not share. So disability itself is really, really complicated, which makes the law about it equally so. Leaving aside arguments about what constitutes disabled, about 10% of the American population has some kind of disability. And just looking at the numbers, it appears that employers do discriminate against them. About 35% of people with disabilities are employed, while 72% of people without disabilities are. This has a lot to do with why Congress in 1990 passed the Americans With Disabilities Act, which did for people with disabilities what the Civil Rights Act of 1964 did for other minority groups. LGBT people have recently been extended some civil rights protections. Now, there are no federal civil rights laws aimed specifically at them, but many local ordinances accord them protection against discrimination. This is especially important because states have attempted to prohibit local governments from passing ordinances that prevent discrimination against LGBT people. Think about that for a second. Local voters wanted to pass laws saying that their community couldn’t discriminate, and the state legislature passed another law prohibiting these anti-discrimination statutes. What? And since LGBT people are not usually in the majority, and certainly don’t make up a majority population in a state, they couldn’t do much to protect themselves. That is, until the Supreme Court stepped in and ruled in Romer v. Evans that states couldn’t do this anymore. More recently the Supreme Court in Lawrence v. Texas ruled that state morality laws that were applied against LGBT people, and not against straight people, were a violation of equal protection. What this means in practice is that everyone has the same right to privacy in their sexual relations. Very recently, the Supreme Court decided in the landmark case Obergefell v. Hodges that state bans on same sex marriage were unconstitutional. This has the effect of making same sex
marriage legal in all 50 states. Whoo! Much like the Brown v. Board of Education decision, some states are making attempts to resist the ruling, and in many states discrimination against LGBT people is still legal, but it seems that the arc of civil rights history is pointing towards justice. So as we can see, civil rights protections coming out of the 14th Amendment have been extended to many groups. These groups, which include people with disabilities, LGBT people, ethnic groups, and women, have two things in common: The first is that they have historically been discriminated against, and in many cases the discrimination continues. The second is that they are numerical minorities – except for women – and this means that they will have a hard time defending themselves in the political arena. Luckily they have the 14th Amendment and all the federal and state anti-discrimination legislation on their side, and the courts to back them up. Thanks for watching, see you next time. You were supposed to be temporarily tabled! Crash Course: Government and Politics is produced in association with PBS Digital Studios. Support for Crash Course: US Government comes from Voqal. Voqal supports nonprofits that use technology and media to advance social equity. Learn more about their mission and initiatives at voqal.org. Crash Course was made with the help of all these nice citizens of planet Earth, and of my heart. Thanks for watching. DFTBA!

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100 thoughts on “Discrimination: Crash Course Government and Politics #31”

  • You didn't mention any of the reasons behind the discrimination, or the ethical or logical concerns which created such rules or attitudes. This doesn't constitute a true or thorough evaluation- just a condemnation. I hereby call you out for presenting as wrote a lot of contentious subjects and thereby ignoring the opinions of large sections of society without the slightest nod. Discrimination against the losers of popularity contests or of legal battles is as unfair as ignoring undocumented immigrants on the grounds that the law doesn't recognize their value or dignity.

  • Each of your on air alter egos have a right to self expression as per rules we've been talking about. I know they can get off topic, but it's only the most benign hierarchy of practical experience dealing with less room in front of the camera than in the comments….

    So now please excuse me. I have to go and compare somebody's post to Nazi propaganda. And maybe show off some gay Vladimir Putin emoticons.


    On second thought. Emotions are all pretty gay. Take that Putin!

  • With a crash course on discrimination I would expect them to at least have mentioned the discrimination of african americans since the 14 amendment was created specifically for the group.

  • Yawn, get back to me when you're ready to apply the same morality standards to government as you do to individuals. Then we'll talk about "Equal Rights."

  • Makes a video about discrimination….doesn't even MENTION slavery or black people, a minority group that has been discriminated against the most throughout U.S. history. Not surprised to be unsurprised.

  • Does this guys lisp bother anyone, I haven't seen anyone mention it. Which is odd because YouTube commenter's usually pick apart anyone as much as possible

  • First dumb video. 🙁
    Illegal means violated US law. You mentioned it, yet choose to say "illegal makes no sense" Shame on you.

  • Don't know how hard this it to fix, but there is a typo in the last slide of data on this presentation. The word political is missing a letter.

  • i really hate 2 because even china is better then us no gun allowed , we are like yemen and its true guns kill more then 911 wish cost us trillions of dollars

  • So I just realized how offensive this video is, because it totally ignores the people that have fought the hardest and longest for cival rights, I can also see how this could be an innocent mistake but this is totally wrong

  • welcome to Texas, where the residents of a city can say "we think that inclusivity of LGBT people is good for community development and business practices" and then the state can say "or nah"

  • UH? latinos have been discriminated against in legislation? Did they not do their research? There was clearly a mass deportation of people who had Hispanic heritage, even going so far as to deport people who have been here for generations. This happened during the great depression.

  • Jesus. Lets say I'm a buisness owner. I'll hire whoever the fuck I want to hire. And that would be the one most fit for the job. Why should I get fined if that person doesnt qualify?

  • It's absolutely crazy that illegal immigrants should get any rights other than emergency medical treatment here. No other country in the world is like this. Also, "Equal protection" nor the Bill of Rights applies to non American citizens, no matter how you try to spin it, so Craig has lost some respect from me here. Native Americans on the other hand deserve all the rights U.S. citizens get for obvious reasons. If we are to be a truly respected and sovereign Nation of Laws, we must practice them effectively and abide by them, so long as all people are treated equally within the confines of our rule of law.

  • Well, I can't wait to go into the comments section and see the thoughtful, reasonable and respectful discussion taking place on this important issue.

  • The only reasons for these anti discrimination laws got passed because of the female voters who felt 'sorry for them' .

  • All things considered, this comments section isn't nearly bad as most. At worst, some jackasses are making strawman comments to stroke their egos to.
    Wish they touched on housing discrimination though, which is perhaps one of the most pernicious, insidious, and hardest to stamp out forms of prejudice out there.

  • Tone of sarcasm "I'm a Nazi, I hate Jews, what? You say I cant do that because i'm discriminating? YOU are discriminating against me!" OBVIOUSLY this is nonsense,

    I honestly say:

    "Not discrimination, Distinction."

  • for all you complaininh aboit cuotas c'mon people, im not american yet i know that it is based on the fact that if 2 people have the same scores and basicly the same then we need to choose the minority one, otherwise we choose the white guy, it is not discriminating againt whites it is though giving an oportunity to people from poor towns an oportunityto succeed that they wouldnt have

  • what about the Irish? You know they where inslaved in the us to, and Not all of them where indentered servets some where out and out slaves, and where cheaper the afracan slaves, and so where more desposable…

  • @3:00 "A person, no matter how they got here, isn't illegal. That just doesn't make sense". <– Okay keep that in mind.

    @3:12 "Those who emigrated here without following the rules, and this violated US law" <– oh, I see. So they VIOLATED US LAW – but they're not illegal.

    @3:30 "California's proposition 187 attempted to take away all social services except for emergency medical care, for those who emigrated unlawfully" <– They they came here unlawfully, they violated US law; that again – they did not follow the law … but somehow, someway, they're not illegal. Because that just doesn't make sense.

    And while we're at it, if you come here illegally, then no, you do not get any privileges. If I break the law, I go to jail. Because I was born here – I guess I have a different standard. Also, if I went to Japan, I'd have to learn Japanese. If I went to Russia, I'd have to learn Russian. But come to America and speak whatever you want and anyone who says different is racist.

    This is why you have over 500 dislikes on this video, mine included.

  • 7:24
    This implies that you are happy about same-sex marriage being legalized. Same-sex marriage is very controversial.

  • I'm just going to remind Crash Course that leftists (Not liberals) are in favor of guns because you need them to seize the means of production

  • The United States court system is so corrupt you're better off just cutting your losses and moving on with your life. No justice here. Save yourself the trouble and move on.

  • answer me this, why are ppl mad over affirmative action, white males still hold all the power in AMERICA

  • The 14th amendment is not the most important, the 1st amendment is. That is the basis for our entire country and government.

  • As a disabled person I think society has a long way to come until we are properly included into society I’m from a town in the uk and not a lot of buildings are accessible this is against the equality act but no one seems to care I can’t access a specific night club and banks and other buildings it’s time to make a change people and be more Inclusive of minority groups

  • Oooh, that annoys me, you are confusing the term illegal alien to mean a person themselves are illegal, which is not true, no person is illegal with the meaning that they are illegally here. Regardless of whether or not they are here legally or illegally, they are aliens, an illegal alien is simply someone who is here illegally, this illegal alien. It's no different than refering to a person who came here legally as a legal Immigrant. This issue has always bugged me and it's very annoying whenever I see it.

  • I hate America I hate America I hate America I hate America I hate America I hate America I hate America I hate America I hate America I hate America I hate America I hate America I hate America I hate America I hate America I hate America I hate America I hate America I hate America I hate America I hate America I hate America I hate America I hate America I hate America I hate America I hate America I hate America I hate America! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!