The following op-ed by EJS President Eva Paterson appears in Huffington Post.
Protecting the 14th Amendment
By Eva Paterson
For almost 150 years, the 14th Amendment has been the backbone of civil rights law in America. Its protection of individual rights for all — from freed slaves to immigrants to workers fighting against race discrimination — has made this amendment an honorary member of the Bill of Rights.
No wonder it is under attack.
In recent months, Republican Senators and state legislators have sought the public spotlight by calling for an end to the amendment’s guarantee of citizenship to those born on U.S. soil. If a child’s parents are not documented, they shout, that child should not be allowed to be a citizen. If they had their way, they would roll back a U.S. Supreme Court decision, U.S. v. Wong Kim Ark, decided more than a century ago.
If this is what the enemies of the 14th Amendment are doing in the spotlight, imagine what they are doing behind the scenes to eviscerate the measure. Those who want to turn the clock back on civil rights also are trying to undo the Amendment’s Equal Protection clause, making it virtually impossible for victims of discrimination to find justice in our courts. Read more.