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(1896) U.S. Supreme Court decision that established the legality of racial segregation so long as facilities were separate but equal. The case involved a challenge to Louisiana laws requiring separate railcars for African Americans and whites. Though the laws were upheld by a majority of 8 to 1, a famous dissent by John Marshall Harlan advanced the idea that the U.S. Constitution is color-blind. The Plessy decision was overturned in 1954 by .
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