Civil Rights Act of 1964
What does Civil Rights Act of 1964 mean?
The Civil Rights Act of 1964 is a landmark piece of legislation that outlawed discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, or national origin in voter registration, employment, and public accommodations, including ending racial segregation in schools.
Examples of Civil Rights Act of 1964
Where does Civil Rights Act of 1964 come from?
During the Civil Rights Movement of the 1950s–60s, black Americans fought hard for basic rights they had been functionally or legally denied. While the movement produced small political victories in 1957 and 1960, the social climate remained pressurized. By June 1963, amid reports of police brutality against black people, President John F. Kennedy proposed a comprehensive anti-discrimination bill. After his assassination in November 1963, president Lyndon B. Johnson took up Kennedy’s bill, urging Congress to support it, in part, to honor his memory.
The House of Representatives debated Kennedy’s bill, known as HR 7152, for nine days, ultimately rejecting many amendments proposed to weaken it. In the Senate, however, HR 7152 opponents filibustered the bill for over 50 days.
After revisions and compromises, the new version passed in the Senate and in the House. Lyndon B. Johnson signed the bill on July 2, 1964 in the presence of civil rights activist Martin Luther King Jr., and the Civil Rights Act of 1964 became law.
Who uses Civil Rights Act of 1964?
The Civil Rights Act of 1964 was extensive. In addition to outlawing discrimination based on the protected classes of race, color, religion, sex, or national origin, it made equal access to public places and equal opportunities for employment mandatory. It also ensured enforcement of the right to vote and demanded desegregation of schools.
While the Civil Rights Act of 1964 did not put an end to discrimination, it paved the way for the Voting Rights Act of 1965 (which outlawed discriminatory voting practices) and the Civil Rights Act of 1968 (against discriminatory housing policies), and helped lead to the expansion of civil rights for other Americans, including people with disabilities.
On signing Civil Rights Act of 1964, LBJ told Americans, "Let us pray for wise and understanding hearts. Let us lay aside irrelevant differences and make our Nation whole." pic.twitter.com/1C81rLRfS0
— Michael Beschloss (@BeschlossDC) October 28, 2018
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