Sociology Answers and Questions
The Voting Rights Act of 1965 was more successful than the Voting Rights Acts of 1957 and 1960 because of several reasons. First, the 1965 Act demonstrates a real shift from formalism to substantive justice. This means that the 1965 Act emphasizes structural causes rather than individual causes of the phenomena. Also, the Act focuses on the issues of strict liability instead of the issues concerning intent. Second, the 1965 Act accentuates on the role of executive agencies, instead of courts, in questions pertaining voting rights of the citizens. Third, the 1965 Act prescribes that the right to vote is not contingent.
The first reason why school desegregation was more successful in the southern states than in the northern and western states is that the plans of desegregation used in the southern states are more ‘norrowly tailored’ then those used in the northern and western states. This means that the southern states are more prone to achieve diversity and avoid racial isolation by means of narrowly tailored assignment plans as argued in Parents Involved v Seattle. Secondly, the northern and western states were segregated de jure, and this happened to be ineffective in states which did not practice segregation.
- As a result of desegregation, Black students in the South were radically prone to attend schools with White students, rather than schools with minorities only.
- As a result of desegregation, Black students in the Northeast were radically inclined to attend schools with minorities only, rather than with White students.
- As a result of desegregation, Black students in the West were insignificantly disposed to attend schools with White students, rather than with minorities only.
The EEO/AA was less effective as it might have been because of the following reasons:
- It emphasized the issues of disparate treatment and disparate effects, instead of the problem on how the requirements of indiscriminate treatment should be implemented in practice;
- It accentuates on the existence of the Affirmative Action Plan, rather than the practical steps of how this plan should be actualized in the disparate environment;
- It provided no mechanism of how to protect the grieved employees from powerful employers.
Stender v. Lucky Stores case is atypical of most employment discrimination lawsuits, because it demonstrates all the pros and cons of the US legal system and law on disparate treatment of workers. This case shows why it is harder for plaintiff to prove disparate treatment than it is to prove disparate impact. According to the case, segregated job ladders originate from unconscious, taken-for-granted prejudices about the kinds of work that best fit men's and women's abilities and aspiration. Therefore, the social stereotypes and statistics are insufficient for proving instances of disparate treatment.
The American legal profession has changed significantly over the last 50 years. More and more lawyers (attorneys, judges, etc.) are represented by African-Americans. Women are competing with men in the legal profession: many women are becoming judges and big firm attorneys. Now, 50 to 51 percent of law school applicants are women, which is quite a change. However, there is not the number of women partners in law firms that there should be. It is much more difficult for women who have families to promote in law offices. Thus, women did not reach true equality in law firms. Another trend is that the population of attorneys increased. The result of such increase may be associated with the lack of accountability and civility. Now representatives of different social classes strive for becoming attorneys.
- From 1951 to 2000, the focus shifted from private legal practice to legal work in corporations;
- From 1951 to 2000, the total number of lawyers significantly increased, while the number of judges, and government lawyers decreased;
- From 1951 to 2000, the number of inactive and retired lawyers shifted insignificantly.
To make it clear, it needs to be explained that the number of lawyers has substantially increased during the last 50 years. Apparently, the increase in numbers of lawyers is connected with the increase of population in the United States. Notwithstanding, the changes in population, the percentages of distribution of lawyers in different practice settings indicate on significant changes which do not depend on the growth of population for the last 50 years. For instance, private legal practice experienced growth in number of professionals, whereas it is possible to notice decrease in the percentage of lawyers in 2000 as compared to 1951.
Women lawyers are more likely to be promoted to partner in small firms, rather than in large firms. This is because in small firms women have better chances to survive competition with men. Woman lawyers are not as successful as male lawyers with similar qualifications. Thus, the compensation of women lawyers is much lower than that of male lawyers, and female lawyers occupy lower positions. This is because administration positions are occupied predominantly by male lawyers, and the largest part of capital for law firms is provided by male lawyers as well.
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