The 14th amendment ratified in 1868 to the United States Constitution granted equal citizenship to all the people born or naturalized in the US, including formerly enslaved individuals. It was an amendment enacted to form the civil rights of Black American people meant to end slavery during the reconstruction era. The clauses in the amendment included equal protection, citizenship, privileges or immunities, and due process clauses. The amendment gave strength to the federal government to punish states that violated the rights of citizens (Openstax.org, 2012). Besides, it provided a legal framework for racial discrimination civil rights movements, thus giving rise to other movements in gender, age, and disabilities, among others. The 14th amendment is significant in the establishment of rights of citizens and equal protection of former slaves.
The Civil Rights Act of 1964 was another significant action taken by the US government in advancing equality for all citizens. The legislation was enacted to end racial, religious, and national origin discrimination. It is regarded as one of the most significant US civil rights laws. It prohibited discrimination in federally funded programs and public accommodations. It gave equal access for Black Americans to transport, restaurants, and other public utilities (AmGov_v1-American government, 2015). The Supreme Court decision in 1954 that racially segregated schools were unlawful triggered the passing of this Act. The first proposal of the Act was done by John F. Kennedy and withstood opposition from the Southern Congress members. President Lyndon B. Johnson finally signed the Act in 1964 and handed it over to civil rights activists such as Martin Luther King Jr, Roy Wilkins, and congress supporters Everett Dirksen and Hubert Humphrey. Moreover, this Act strengthened the voting rights enforcement and desegregation of public schools.
Openstax.org. (2012). American Government. 5.1 What Are Civil Rights and How Do We Identify Them? Web.
AmGov_v1-American government. (2015). HARHKS1AT315-V001200 [Video]. YouTube. Web.