MEYER v. NEBRASKA

Print this Page
Case Basics
Docket No. 
325
Petitioner 
Meyer
Respondent 
Nebraska
Decided By 
Term:
Facts of the Case 

Nebraska, along with other states, prohibited the teaching of modern foreign languages to grade school children. Meyer, who taught German in a Lutheran school, was convicted under this law.

Question 

Does the Nebraska statute violate the Fourteenth Amendment's Due Process clause?

Conclusion 

Yes, the Nebraska law is unconstitutional. Nebraska violated the liberty protected by due process of the Fourteenth Amendment. Liberty means more than freedom from bodily restraint. State regulation of liberty must be reasonably related to a proper state objective. The legislature's view of reasonableness was subject to supervision by the courts. The legislative purpose of the law was to promote assimilation and civic development. But these purposes were not adequate to justify interfering with Meyer's liberty to teach or the liberty of parents to employ him during a "time of peace and domestic tranquillity."

Cite this Page
MEYER v. NEBRASKA. The Oyez Project at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law. 16 November 2014. <http://www.oyez.org/cases/1901-1939/1922/1922_325>.
MEYER v. NEBRASKA, The Oyez Project at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law, http://www.oyez.org/cases/1901-1939/1922/1922_325 (last visited November 16, 2014).
"MEYER v. NEBRASKA," The Oyez Project at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law, accessed November 16, 2014, http://www.oyez.org/cases/1901-1939/1922/1922_325.