BOLLING v. SHARPE
On account of their race, black children in Washington D.C. were denied admission to the same public schools which white children attended.
Did the segregation of the public schools of Washington D.C. violate the due process clause of the Fifth Amendment?
Legal provision: Equal Protection
Yes. In a unanimous decision, the Court found that racial discrimination in the public schools of Washington D.C. denied blacks due process of law as protected by the Fifth Amendment. Noting the legal peculiarities of the District of Columbia, Chief Justice Warren recognized that the Fifth Amendment (which applied to the District) did not contain an equal protection clause while the Fourteenth Amendment (which was used as the standard for outlawing racial segregation in public education in Brown v. Board of Education) did. Lacking an equal protection standard to invalidate the District's racial segregation in public education, Warren creatively relied on the Fifth Amendment's guarantee of "liberty" to find the segregation of the Washington D.C. schools unconstitutional.