The Supreme Court has set its agenda for the week and will hear arguments on two cases involving civil rights. The first case involves the strip search of a young girl by school administrators hot in pursuit of...ibuprofen. They had received a tip that she was distributing, but turned up nothing in their search of the honor student. While this seems like a blatant and outrageous violation of the girl's fourth amendment rights, the Court has upheld such searches and allows the court to revisit the issue of whether civil rights can be limited at the schoolhouse door in order to protect the health, safety, or morals of the children within.
Next on the docket is a look at affirmative action in practice in the city of New Haven, Connecticut. The court will hear arguments on behalf of several firefighters (mostly white, but one is Latino) who feel that the city violated their rights to equal opportunity for work by eliminating a test that put firefighters who passed the exam on track for promotion. One of the firefighters, who had severe dyslexia, got tutoring and studied for thirteen hours a day and passed it. But no African American candidates on the firefighting force passed it, which prompted the city of New Haven to eliminate the test on the ground that it showed a gross disparity of opportunity for black firefighters than for whites.
Joining The Takeaway to discuss these cases and more is Kenji Yoshino, the Chief Justice Earl Warren Professor of Law at NYU law school.