A prominent 19th century historical figure has publicly declared slavery “a stain on our national character.” Abraham Lincoln? FrÃ©dÃ©ric Douglass? John Brown? No. Roger Brooke Taney who, as Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States, authored the infamous 1857 Dred Scott decision denying African Americans citizenship rights in this country. American history is a mass of complexities and contradictions. Chief Justice Taney’s legal career strongly supports this concept.
Recent editorials and press articles have addressed the political storm surrounding the teaching of Critical Race Theory, which argues that various institutions in this country over the course of its existence have had a significant negative impact on the lives of people from across the country. color. This controversy has reached a level of impact on national and local elections across the country. As part of this re-examination of our history, the bust of Justice Taney was recently removed from the Capitol in Washington where the Supreme Court heard cases in the 19th century. While Judge Taney more than deserves the universal condemnation he endured for writing the Dred Scott decision, a review of his prejudicial career reveals a man whose professional conduct was utterly inconsistent with Dred Scott’s position that Afro- Americans do not enjoy any legal rights in this country. .