Brown v. Board of Education
65 years ago -- on May 17, 1954 -- the United States Supreme Court issued it unanimous decision in Brown v. Board of Education holidng that racial segregation of children in public schools was unconstitutional. Chief Justice Warren wrote for the Court: "in the field of public education the doctrine of 'seperate but equal' has no place," as segregated schools are "inherently unequal." As a result, the Court ruled that the plaintiffs were being "deprived of the equal protection of the laws guaranteed by the 14th Amendment."
The decision did not achieve school desegregation on its own, eventually leaving it to lower federal courts and school boards to proceed with desegregation "with all deliberate speed." Some officials followed this directive, while many school and local officials in the South did not. These events fueled the civil rights movement in the United States. Today, Brown v. Board of Education is seen as one of the most important decisions issued by the U.S. Supreme Court.