150 years ago, a 5-4 majority denuded one of the Fourteenth Amendment's central provisions of almost any substantive force. The effects of that ruling are still being felt today.
Thank you for a detailed overview of the Slaughterhouse cases, and how it relates to Reconstruction. Another example of why your posts are so important.
The tips on using the Court’s website are a welcome bonus.
I was pleased to read your ONE FIRST entry about the Slaughterhouse Cases, and the Court's gutting of the Privileges and Immunities Clause. I gave a talk a number of years ago at the Maine Law School, subsequently published in their Law Review, using the Slaughterhouse Cases as the subject of a counter-factual history, "What If the Butchers in The Slaughter House Cases Had Won?: An Exercise in "Counterfactual Doctrine." Since in his Dobbs concurrence, Justice Thomas called for the Court to correct its erroneous decisions based on "the fundamental right to privacy," perhaps he can also urge the Court to overturn the Slaughterhouse Cases. Thomas has, in the past, actually endorsed such a position (one of the few times we have ever agreed), but seemingly with no takers. But now that he is in the catbird seat with the current Court, it probably will be on a "relist" in the not too distant future. If you or any of your readers are interested in reading my counter-factual Slaughterhouse Cases outcome, here is the cite: Scarborough, "What If the Butchers in The Slaughter House Cases Had Won?: An Exercise in "Counterfactual" Doctrine, 50 Me. L. Rev. 211 (1998).
Best newsletter on Substack. It has always seemed to me that substantive due process reduces to procedural due process, including the judicial nomination process itself.
When writing laws or constitutional amendments, it appears you have to really spell things out so their intent is perfectly obvious.
Here's my take on where Miller went so very wrong: When the 14th Amendment speaks of Privileges or Immunities of "Citizens", it's describing a class of people to whom those rights apply, not a description of a bundle of rights (rights of "citizens", not particular rights of "citizenship"). And why doesn't the 14th A. include Privileges or Immunities of Citizens of the "States"? Because everyone (born here) is a citizen of the "United States", regardless of which "State" they are a citizen of.
What a tragedy this decision was.
Thank you for this post, as well as all your others.