Killing Precedent: The Slaughter-House Constitution

A historical review of the Slaughter-House Cases illuminates its relevance beyond destroying the Privileges or Immunities Clause. The exclusion of black abolitionists’ pre-decision slavery archive is examined. American constitutional language and exclusion are contrasted by the Court’s neglect of this collection and its presentation of black people as postwar victims. Slaughter-House should be reevaluated to affirm Congress’s rights to right past wrongs and assure equal protection for all people.

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