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Post-Civil War Law Who Did It Benefit For most Americans today the law is a static entity something which from day to day does not cross our minds because of its relatively fixed position Theoretically the law protects all Americans equally regardless of race ethnicity or class and is the tool of just and impartial lawmakers who represent us in Congress The judiciary both at the state and federal levels serves as the interpreters of the law supposedly wielding little power in influencing state and national policy That is the theory Following the Civil War the United States was a country in turmoil having narrowly averted the secession of eleven states and now faced with the prospect of integrating those states back into the Union From 1860 the beginning of the Civil War to 1920 the beginning of the first World War American society changed drastically with the integration of the freedman and the Industrial Revolution and the law changed with it Unfortunately during this time American law was influenced heavily by a handful of elites who used the law to their benefit while hampering the efforts of minorities to succeed This influence on American law had profound effects on minorities in two areas race and ethnicity and economic and social class Cases such as Plessy v Ferguson and Welton v Missouri are prime examples of how the elites during this time used law to discriminate against large minorities whether they be blacks or small business owners in order to stay on top of the American class system After the emancipation of the slaves following the end of the Civil War The US government attempted to rectify the problem of discrimination against blacks through the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1875 It stated that all persons within the jurisdiction of the United States shall be entitled to the full and equal enjoyment of the accommodations advantages facilities and privileges
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