Thirteenth Amendment Established Universal Freedom
The requirements of a violation of an individual’s Thirteenth Amendment rights are clear. See United States v. Kozminski, 487 U.S. 931, 108 S. Ct. 2751, 101 L. Ed. 2d 788 (1988).
In 1871, the Virginia Supreme Court ruled that a convicted person was “a slave of the State.”
In United States v. Kozminski, the Supreme Court held that: The primary purpose of the [Thirteenth] Amendment was to abolish the institution of slavery as it had existed in the United States at the time of the Civil War, but the Amendment was not limited to that purpose; the phrase “involuntary servitude” was intended to extend to “cover those forms of compulsory labor akin to African slavery which in practical operation would tend to produce like undesirable results.” 487 U.S. at 942, 108 S. Ct. 2751 (1988)(quoting Butler v. Perry, 240 U.S. 328, 332, 36 S. Ct. 258, 60 L. Ed. 672 (1913)).
The Court further noted that “while the general spirit of the phrase `involuntary servitude’ is easily comprehended, the exact range of conditions it prohibits is harder to define.” Id. This Court holds that the actions of CVS constitute neither “compulsory labor” nor physical coercion. Caldwell failed to allege any facts which demonstrate that CVS’ employee’s conduct rises to the level prohibited by the Thirteenth Amendment. As Plaintiff’s own Complaint alleges, the by Vineland police told him that he was “free to go.” (Compl. at 1.) Therefore, Plaintiff cannot meet the necessary threshold to establish a claim under the Thirteenth Amendment. Caldwell v. CVS Corp., 443 F. Supp. 2d 654 (D.N.J. 2006) District Court, D. New Jersey
Does the authority of Congress to enforce the Thirteenth Amendment “by appropriate legislation” include the power to eliminate all racial barriers to the acquisition of real and personal property? We think the answer to that question is plainly yes. “By its own unaided force and effect,” the Thirteenth Amendment “abolished slavery, and established universal freedom.” Civil Rights Cases, 109 U.S. 3, 20, 3 S.Ct. 18, 27, 27 L.Ed. 835.
Whether or not the Amendment itself did any more than that — a question not involved in this case — it is at least clear that the Enabling Clause of that Amendment empowered Congress to do much more. For that clause clothed “Congress with power to pass all laws necessary and proper for abolishing all badges and incidents of slavery in the United States.” Ibid. (Emphasis added.) Bronze Shields v. N. J. Dept. of Civil Serv 667 F.2d 1074 (3d Cir. 1981)
Holding that “[w]hen plaintiffs allege classwide racially discriminatory treatment in violation of Title VII, proof of discriminatory motive is essential, although the burden may be met in some situations by presentation of statistical evidence that permits an inference of racial discrimination”Croker v. Boeing Co. 662 F.2d 975 (3d Cir. 1981)
Concerned with removing the badges and incidents of slavery, the legislators of 1866 believed that if economic freedom was protected, social freedom and equality would follow. Senator Trumbull, who introduced the 1866 Act, specified certain “great fundamental rights” denied to freedmen by former slave states: the right to acquire property, the right to come and go at pleasure, the right to enforce rights in the courts, to make contracts, and to inherit and dispose of property. Goodman v. Lukens Steel Co. 777 F.2d 113 (3d Cir. 1985)
Both § 1981 and § 1982 are directed at the same kind of discrimination: racial animus. Jones, 392 U.S. at 426, 88 S.Ct. at 2196. Both sections share a similar purpose, ensuring predominantly economic rights, and have been given similar construction. See Meyers v. Pennypack Woods Home Owners Assoc., 559 F.2d 894 (3d Cir. 1977).
The Fair Housing Act was designed to provide nationwide fair housing to minorities who had previously been victims of invidious racial discrimination, and is a valid exercise of congressional power under the Thirteenth Amendment to eliminate badges and incidents of slavery. See Jones v. Alfred H. Mayer Co., 392 U.S. 409, 439-440, 88 S.Ct. 2186, 20 L.Ed.2d 1189 (1968).
This legislation makes it the policy of the United States to eliminate all instances of racial discrimination in housing. Mitchell v. Cellone 389 F.3d 86 (3d Cir. 2004)
Suggesting in dicta that nominal damages may be appropriate for a FHA violation based on racial discrimination given that “the inability to buy or lease real property can be considered one of the badges and incidents of slavery” Alexander v. Riga 208 F.3d 419 (3d Cir. 2000)
Racial discrimination, according to the Supreme Court, is a “fundamental injury to the individual rights of a person,” Goodman v. Lukens Steel, 482 U.S. 656, 661 (1987), and the inability to buy or lease real property can be considered one of the badges and incidents of slavery. See also The Civil Rights Cases, 109 U.S. 3, 22 — 23 (1883).
Indeed, even absent proof of actual injury, nominal damages are to be awarded to recognize violation of a constitutional right. Carey v. Piphus, 435 U.S. 247, 266-67 (1978).
There are three problems with the Township’s position. First, City of Memphis was concerned with the standard for establishing a violation of the Thirteenth Amendment’s ban on the “badges and incidents of slavery in the United States.” Id. at 125–26, 101 S.Ct. 1584. Whatever that standard might be—a question left open by the Supreme Court’s ruling in that case, see id. at 130, 101 S.Ct. 1584 (White, J., concurring)— City of Memphis did not consider the FHA. All of the courts of appeals that have considered the matter, including this one, have concluded that plaintiffs can show the FHA has been violated through policies that have a disparate impact on a minority group. See Mt. Holly Gardens Citizens in Action Inc. v. Twp. of Mount Holly 658 F.3d 375 (3d Cir. 2011)It then held that, at least in a situation where the right to interstate travel is implicated or where a federal power to abolish the badges and incidents of slavery under the Thirteenth Amendment can be invoked, no state action is required to establish the constitutional power to regulate private activity. The Court proceeded to examine the legislative history of § 1985(3), and, finding no reason to decline to accord the terms of the statute their full sweep, sustained the plaintiffs’ claim Novotny v. Great Am. Federal Sav. L. Ass’n 584 F.2d 1235 (3d Cir. 1978)
Plaintiffs have presented evidence of some difficult working conditions, but they have demonstrated nothing “akin to African slavery” or any modern analogue. Any such comparison is plainly frivolous. Plaintiffs do not allege that they were held in a labor camp or forced into daily labor by a religious sect. Any allegation that their working conditions constituted forced confinement falls with their false imprisonment claims, discussed later in this opinion. Zavala v. Wal Mart Stores Inc. 691 F.3d 527 (3d Cir. 2012)
As we observed in Mahone, the legislative history of these acts manifests “Congress’ purpose to enact sweeping legislation implementing the thirteenth amendment to abolish all the remaining badges and vestiges of the slavery system.” 564 F.2d at 1030. The legislative history also reflects a fear that some state courts might remain hostile forums for adjudication of rights under the thirteenth, and later the fourteenth, amendments. The original 1866 legislation provided that federal court jurisdiction would be exclusive for “persons who are denied or cannot enforce in the courts or judicial tribunals of the State or locality where they may be any of the rights secured to them by the first section of this act.” Act of April 9, 1866, ch. 31, § 3, 14 Stat. 27 (1866). In addition, the Act provided that a defendant in any state court proceeding initiated to punish acts committed in furtherance of the Civil Rights Act would have the right to have the case removed to federal court. Id. Davis v. United States Steel Supply, Division of United States Steel Corp. 688 F.2d 166 (3d Cir. 1982)
“[T]he phrase `involuntary servitude’ was intended `to cover those forms of compulsory labor akin to African slavery which in practical operation would tend to produce like undesirable results.'” We have recently said that we will “tak[e] a contextual approach to involuntary servitude by confining the Thirteenth Amendment to those situations that are truly `akin to African slavery.'” Steirer v. Bethlehem Area School Dist., 987 F.2d 989 (3d Cir. 1993).
A requirement that an attorney perform uncompensated service after entering an appearance in a criminal matter does not evoke in our minds the burdens endured by the African slaves in the cotton fields or kitchens of the antebellum south. United States v. Kozminski, 487 U.S. 931, 942, 108 S.Ct. 2751, 2759, 101 L.Ed.2d 788 (1988) (quoting Butler v. Perry, 240 U.S. 328, 332, 36 S.Ct. 258, 259, 60 L.Ed. 672 (1916)). U.S. v. Bertoli 994 F.2d 1002 (3d Cir. 1993)
The primary purpose of the [Thirteenth] Amendment was to abolish the institution of African slavery as it had existed in the United States at the time of the Civil War, but the Amendment was not limited to that purpose; the phrase “involuntary servitude” was intended to extend “to cover those forms of compulsory labor akin to African slavery which in practical operation would tend to produce” like undesirable results.” Steirer by Steirer v. Bethlehem Area Sch. Dist 987 F.2d 989 (3d Cir. 1993) 18 U.S.C. § 1595, which provides a civil remedy for a violation of § 1589 Wilson v. U.S. Gov’t No. 18-1877 (3d Cir. Oct. 30, 2019)
The District Court noted further that, in Brown v. Philip Morris Inc., 250 F.3d 789, 805 (3d Cir. 2001), we stated with respect to private conspiracies, that the United States Supreme Court has recognized only two protected rights under § 1985(3): the right to be free from involuntary servitude and the right to interstate travel. It appears that this reference has given rise to Obuskovic’s new claim on appeal of “slavery” and “peonage.” Although we generally do not consider arguments that were not raised before the District Court, see Appalachian States Low-Level Radioactive Waste Commission v. Pena, 126 F.3d 193, 196 (3d Cir. 1997), Obuskovic’s assertion that she was “forced” to proceed pro se at the divorce trial is not plausible. U.S. v. Cooper 396 F.3d 308 (3d Cir. 2005)
As the District Court recognized, “involuntary servitude” could encompass peonage, where a person is forced, through a threat of legal sanctions, to work off a debt. See, e.g., Burrell v. Loungo No. 16-4405 (3d Cir. Sep. 12, 2018)
Holding that “the nature of the services” and “the amount of time they took” was required information before the court could determine if prison officials deprived pretrial detainee of Thirteenth Amendment or due process rights. We conclude that Tourscher was a duly convicted prisoner who could be compelled to work in the prison cafeteria until the date the Court of Common Pleas regained jurisdiction following the Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s denial of the Commonwealth’s petition for allowance of appeal. Accordingly, we affirm in part the dismissal of the first complaint. Tourscher v. McCollough 184 F.3d 236 (3d Cir. 1999)
The thirteenth amendment prohibits slavery and involuntary servitude. From its first interpretation by the Supreme Court, the amendment has been construed to grant to Congress the “power to pass all laws necessary and proper for abolishing all badges and incidents of slavery.” Civil Rights Cases, 109 U.S. at 20, 3 S.Ct. at 28. Much more recently, the Court has declared that “Congress has the power under the Thirteenth Amendment rationally to determine what are the badges and the incidents of slavery, and the authority to translate that determination into effective legislation.” Jones v. Alfred H. Mayer Co., 392 U.S. 409, 440, 88 S.Ct. 2186, 2203, 20 L.Ed.2d 1189 (1968)
(Congress has power under the thirteenth amendment to prohibit private as well as public discrimination). Croker v. Boeing Co. 662 F.2d 975 (3d Cir. 1981)
The “badges and incidents of slavery” as well as the rights of all citizens, white and black alike, created by § 1981 are objective. The § 1981 rights do not derive their life from the nefarious intent of those who would deprive citizens of their thirteenth amendment and statutory entitlements, i.e., to be free from the incidents of slavery and to participate fully and freely in American society. I cannot believe that Congress would use such broad language as it did in § 1981, creating new rights for minority citizens, only to have the vindication of those rights denied by benign neglect or institutional forms of racism. Bronze Shields v. N. J. Dept. of Civil Serv 667 F.2d 1074 (3d Cir. 1981)
It is, indeed, not probable that a general attempt will be made to restore slavery in its old form, on account of the barriers which such an attempt will find in its way; but there are systems intermediate between slavery as it formerly existed in the south, and free labor as it exists in the north, but more nearly related to the former than to the latter, the introduction of which will be attempted. Goodman v. Lukens Steel Co. 777 F.2d 113 (3d Cir. 1985)
A historically based interpretation of the Thirteenth Amendment also protects liberty rights other than those linked to family relations. Right-to-travel cases further indicate that the Thirteenth Amendment is a substantive guarantee of freedom. Justice William Douglas found the right to travel abroad and within the United States was “a part of our heritage” that the Due Process Clause of the Fifth Amendment protects. In Kent v. Dulles, he explained the subtle nature of that right: “Travel abroad, like travel within the country, may be necessary for a livelihood. It may be as close to the heart of the individual as the choice of what he eats, or wears, or reads. Freedom of movement is basic in our scheme of values.” Justice Douglas did not, however, provide a reason for finding that right in the Bill of Rights. Indeed, slaves’ in [*PG382] ability to freely travel without their masters’ permission indicates that the Fifth Amendment did not adequately protect that right. Slaves were restricted from relocating. Even those slaves who worked for their masters outside the homestead or plantation only traveled at the masters’ sufferance. After liberation, many blacks wandered in the country and settled in cities away from their plantations. The newly freed people desired freedom from manacles and the ability to live and work where they wished. Often they were financially strapped, but preferred freedom to the security of their old homes.
Mr. [Assemblyman] Bate asked if § 2C:13-2 covered farm workers. Mr. [Assemblyman] Hawkins then suggested that they consider defining “involuntary servitude” so that it would apply to farm workers. They agreed on a definition that the condition of involuntary servitude would include slavery, peonage and “the creation of circumstances resulting in a belief by another that he must remain in a particular location. State v. Marchand 227 N.J. Super. 92 (N.J. Super. 1988) “(a) Ceasing or refusing to perform any work or to remain in any relation of employment.” That is the fundamental law of our land prohibiting involuntary servitude and guaranteed in the Thirteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution. Westinghouse Elec. v. United Elec 49 A.2d 896 (N.J. 1946) “It should be borne in mind that a distinction must exist between compelling one to keep his contract of employment and forbidding him to work for his rival in the same line. The first would require involuntary servitude in violation of the thirteenth amendment to the constitution, while the second would not be subject to that criticism.” A. Fink Sons v. Goldberg 139 A. 408 (N.J. 1927)
In State v. Marchand, 227 N.J. Super. 92, 96-98 (App. Div. 1988), aff’d o.b., 114 N.J. 569 (1989), we examined the origins of this phrase. The “deemed to be” sentence in our statute is not contained in the federal criminal statutes on “involuntary servitude.” 18 U.S.C.A. § 241; 18 U.S.C.A. § 1584, or in the Model Penal Code. Indeed, it may be unique to our State. See II Model Penal Code and Commentaries, § 212.2 at 243 n. 22, n. 23 (1980). The federal criminal statutes have recently been construed by the Supreme Court in United States v. Kozminski, ___ U.S. ___, ___, 108 S.Ct. 2751, 2765, 101 L.Ed.2d 788 (1988), which said that “the jury must be instructed that compulsion of services by the use or threatened use of physical or legal coercion is a necessary incident of a condition of involuntary servitude.” The language and legislative history of the federal acts indicate that their scope “should be limited to cases involving the compulsion of services by the use or threatened use of physical or legal coercion.” Id. at ___, 108 S.Ct. at 2763. See also David v. Vesta Co., 45 N.J. 301 , 319-320 (1965) (Law Against Discrimination as judicially implemented not violative of Thirteenth Amendment proscription against involuntary servitude). We are not convinced that the “deemed to be” sentence, which has been added to our particular statutory definition of the crime when our Code was adopted in 1979, compels a different construction of involuntary servitude. State v. Marchand 227 N.J. Super. 92 (N.J. Super. 1988)
The thirteenth amendment prohibits slavery and involuntary servitude. From its first interpretation by the Supreme Court, the amendment has been construed to grant to Congress the “power to pass all laws necessary and proper for abolishing all badges and incidents of slavery.” Civil Rights Cases, 109 U.S. at 20, 3 S.Ct. at 28. Much more recently, the Court has declared that “Congress has the power under the Thirteenth Amendment rationally to determine what are the badges and the incidents of slavery, and the authority to translate that determination into effective legislation.” Jones v. Alfred H. Mayer Co., 392 U.S. 409, 440, 88 S.Ct. 2186, 2203, 20 L.Ed.2d 1189 (1968) (Congress has power under thirteenth amendment to prohibit private as well as public discrimination). Croker v. Boeing Co. 662 F.2d 975 (3d Cir. 1981)
Holding that unless there is a violation of legislation enacted under § 2 of the Thirteenth Amendment, there is no violation of the Thirteenth Amendment. Memphis v. Greene 451 U.S. 100 (1981)
Congress also enacted 42 U.S.C. § 1985(3) (1976 ed., Supp. IV) in part to implement the commands of the Thirteenth Amendment. See Griffin v. Breckenridge, 403 U.S. 88, 104-105 (1971). While holding that § 1985(3) does not require state action but also reaches private conspiracies, we have emphasized that a violation of the statute requires “some racial, or perhaps otherwise class-based, invidiously discriminatory animus behind the conspirators’ action.” Id., at 102.