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‘Discontinue relying on Insular Cases’

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Posted on Mar 31 2021
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WASHINGTON, D.C.—Rep. Raúl Grijalva (D-Arizona), chair of the House Natural Resources Committee, has introduced a resolution (H. Res. 279) acknowledging that the U.S. Supreme Court’s decisions in the Insular Cases and the “territorial incorporation doctrine” are contrary to the text and history of the U.S. Constitution, rest on racial views and stereotypes from the era of Plessy v. Ferguson that have long been rejected, are contrary to our nation’s most basic constitutional and democratic principles, and should be rejected as having no place in United States constitutional law.

Equally American issued the following statement in support of this important resolution:

“The Insular Cases are a stain on American history that for far too long have relegated the 3.5  million Americans living in American Samoa, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands to a second-class status,” said Neil Weare, president and founder of Equally American, a nonpartisan public interest organization that works to advance equality and voting rights in U.S. territories. “The shameful legacy of these controversial Supreme Court decisions is rooted in the same racism as Plessy v. Ferguson. Yet unlike Plessy, which laid the foundation for racial segregation, the Insular Cases and the colonial structure they created have yet to be overruled,” Weare added. “Equally American applauds Chairman Grijalva’s leadership on this important issue along with other cosponsors and urges the House of Representatives to approve this crucial resolution as soon as possible.” (PR)

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