Anti-communist oaths persist despite court rulingstags: Red Scare, AP, McCarthyism, Legislature
It has been just shy of 50 years since the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that a Washington state law barring members of the Communist Party from voting or holding public-sector jobs is unconstitutional.
Evidently, that is not enough time to remove it from the books.
Washington is one of a handful of states with similar laws still in existence despite their having been declared unconstitutional decades ago.
With few exceptions - most notably Georgia, where an anti-communist oath was administered to incoming Dunwoody City Councilmembers as recently as last year - the laws are treated as part of a bygone era, not unlike state statutes prohibiting interracial marriage, the last of which was removed from Alabama's books in 2001 even though the Supreme Court ruled them unconstitutional in 1967.
Rep. Joe Fitzgibbon, D-Burien, first introduced a measure to repeal Washington state's anachronistic anti-subversives law last year, figuring, he says, that it would be an unceremonious end to a dead-letter statute originating from a dark period in our nation's history.
He was wrong. Though his bill passed out of the House Judiciary Committee, it did so on a party-line vote, with four Republicans opposed...
comments powered by Disqus
- Joan Baez, Sly Stone, Steve Martin, Ben E. King -- all honored by the Library of Congress
- StoryCorps to Launch Global Expansion With $1M TED Prize
- Hofstra Event Looks at Bush Presidency
- Did Israel steal uranium from a town in Pennsylvania in the 1960s?
- Sequel to Nelson Mandela's Long Walk to Freedom to be published next year
- History Camp "unconference" returns for the second year in Boston
- History Department at Connecticut College deplores Facebook post on Palestinians
- Historians join other scholars in protesting Georgia's anti-gay legislation
- Homeland Security historian builds winning case against Salvadoran leader who oversaw crimes
- What Howard Zinn taught the students of Spelman College