ERIC Number: ED218369
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1982-Apr
Reference Count: 0
Is the Door in the Invisible Wall Closing?
Windsor, Duane; Greanias, George
Several Supreme Court decisions in the 1970s have rejected constitutional arguments aimed at eliminating exclusionary zoning and growth management schemes which allegedly maintain existing problems of racial and income segregation in major metropolitan areas. These decisions have led observers to conclude that the Supreme Court has greatly narrowed the range of legal tools that can be used to strike down barriers to neighborhood integration. This conclusion ignores the facts that Federal legislation and State constitutions provide other usable legal remedies which may prove superior to the constitutional clauses on interstate commerce and equal protection as arguments for integration; furthermore, it is difficult to interpret education, housing, and travel as being "implicit rights" in the United States Constitution. In emphasizing legal technicalities, the controversy over recent trends in Federal court decisions on residential segregation fails to focus on the real issue, namely the difficulty of building low and moderate income housing in the suburbs. While the legal tools for doing so may be available, the political support and funds are not. Ultimately, the construction of such housing will depend on private builders and legislation rather than on judicial processes. The fundamental issue is the effect judicial removal of zoning barriers in suburban areas will have on the supply and cost of housing. (Author/MJL)
Descriptors: Civil Rights, Community Planning, Constitutional Law, Court Litigation, Economic Factors, Federal Legislation, Housing Discrimination, Housing Opportunities, Land Use, Neighborhood Integration, Public Policy, Racial Discrimination, Racial Segregation, State Legislation, Suburban Housing, Zoning
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Fair Housing Law 1968; Supreme Court
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Urban Affairs Association (Philadelphia, PA, April, 1982).