Citation. 392 U.S. 409, 88 S.Ct. 2186, 20 L.Ed.2d 1189 (1968).
Brief Fact Summary.
Plaintiff alleged Defendant refused to sell him a home because of his race in violation of his rights under the under the 13th Amendment.
Synopsis of Rule of Law.
Congress can regulate the sale of private property to prevent racial discrimination. Sec. 1982 is a valid exercise of the power of the Congress to enforce the 13th Amendment.
Plaintiff was attempting to buy a home in the Paddock Woods community of St. Louis County, Missouri. When his application was denied, Plaintiff brought suit, alleging the Defendant had refused to sell because of the Plaintiff’s race.
Whether a race-based refusal to sell a home constitutes violation of Sec. 1982, which guarantees equal rights to all citizens in real estate transactions.
Yes. A race-based refusal to sell a home constitutes violation of Sec. 1982, which guarantees equal rights to all citizens in real estate transactions.
The Court’s construction of Sec. 1982 as applying to purely private action is wrong, or at least open to serious doubt. There is inherent ambiguity in the term “right” as used in Sec. 1982.
Sec. 1982 was intended to prohibit all discrimination against Black property owners. This includes both governmental discrimination and private discrimination. Additionally, the 13th Amendment gives Congress the authority to eliminate barriers to property ownership that constitutes badges and incidents of slavery. When racial discrimination herds men into ghettos and makes their ability to buy property turn on the color of their skin, then it too is a relic of slavery. Judgement reversed.