Slaughterhouse Cases


Also found in: Legal.

Slaughterhouse Cases,

cases decided by the U.S. Supreme Court in 1873. In 1869 the Louisiana legislature granted a 25-year monopoly to a slaughterhouse concern in New Orleans for the stated purpose of protecting the people's health. Other slaughterhouse operators barred from their trade brought suit, principally on the ground that they had been deprived of their property without due process of law in violation of the Fourteenth AmendmentFourteenth Amendment,
addition to the U.S. Constitution, adopted 1868. The amendment comprises five sections. Section 1

Section 1 of the amendment declares that all persons born or naturalized in the United States are American citizens and citizens of their state
..... Click the link for more information.
. The U.S. Supreme Court, with Justice Samuel F. Miller rendering the majority decision, decided against the slaughterhouse operators, holding that the Fourteenth Amendment had to be considered in light of the original purpose of its framers, i.e., to guarantee the freedom of former black slaves. Although the amendment could not be construed to refer only to black slavery, its scope as originally planned did not include rights such as those in question. A distinction was drawn between United States and state citizenship, and it was held that the amendment did not intend to deprive the state of legal jurisdiction over the civil rights of its citizens. The restraint placed by the Louisiana legislators on the slaughterhouse operators was declared not to deprive them of their property without due process.
References in periodicals archive ?
The Supreme Court ignored all this in the Slaughterhouse Cases, decided just five years after the 14th Amendment was ratified.
The Court did, as expected, rule that states must obey the Second Amendment, and the majority opinion by Justice Samuel Alito relied on the Court's usual substantive due process analysis, saying "there is no need to reconsider" the Slaughterhouse Cases.
If the Slaughterhouse cases are reinterpreted to confirm the "incorporation" of the Bill of Rights against state infringement, legal scholars say it's likely constitutional guarantees such as the right to a jury in civil cases, the right to a grand jury in felony cases, and other parts of the Bill of Rights would be applied against the states automatically.
The dissents in the Slaughterhouse Cases (1873) by Justices Joseph Bradley and Stephen Field were clear and insightful in their defense of individual rights, here economic liberties.
Through a number of creative and forceful opinions, particularly his dissents in the Slaughterhouse Cases (1873) and Munn v.
Therefore, I'm very philosophically supportive of the efforts to put real meaning back into the Takings Clause and to overturn the Slaughterhouse cases which, of course, completely read the Privileges and Immunities Clause out of the Constitution.