MR. JUSTICE HARLAN delivered the opinion of the Court.
Petitioner, Sandra Adickes, a white school teacher from New York, brought this suit in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York against respondent S. H. Kress & Co. ("Kress") to recover damages under 42 U. S. C. § 1983
Petitioner's complaint had two counts,
The second count of her complaint, alleging that both the refusal of service and her subsequent arrest were the product of a conspiracy between Kress and the Hattiesburg police, was dismissed before trial on a motion for summary judgment. The District Court ruled that petitioner had "failed to allege any facts from which a conspiracy might be inferred." 252 F. Supp., at 144. This determination was unanimously affirmed by the Court of Appeals, 409 F. 2d, at 126-127.
Miss Adickes, in seeking review here, claims that the District Court erred both in directing a verdict on the substantive count, and in granting summary judgment on the conspiracy count. Last Term we granted certiorari, 394 U.S. 1011 (1969), and we now reverse and remand for further proceedings on each of the two counts.
As explained in Part I, because the respondent failed to show the absence of any disputed material fact, we think the District Court erred in granting summary judgment. With respect to the substantive count, for reasons explained in Part II, we think petitioner will have made out a claim under § 1983 for violation of her equal protection rights if she proves that she was refused service by Kress because of a state-enforced custom requiring racial segregation in Hattiesburg restaurants. We think the courts below erred (1) in assuming that the only proof relevant to showing that a custom was state-enforced related to the Mississippi criminal trespass statute; (2) in defining the relevant
Briefly stated, the conspiracy count of petitioner's complaint made the following allegations: While serving as a volunteer teacher at a "Freedom School" for Negro children in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, petitioner went with six of her students to the Hattiesburg Public Library at about noon on August 14, 1964. The librarian refused to allow the Negro students to use the library, and asked them to leave. Because they did not leave, the librarian called the Hattiesburg chief of police who told petitioner and her students that the library was closed, and ordered them to leave. From the library, petitioner and the students proceeded to respondent's store where they wished to eat lunch. According to the complaint, after the group sat down to eat, a policeman came into the store "and observed [Miss Adickes] in the company of the Negro students." A waitress then came to the booth where petitioner was sitting, took the orders of the Negro students, but refused to serve petitioner because she was a white person "in the company of Negroes." The complaint goes on to allege that after this refusal of service, petitioner and her students left the Kress store. When the group reached the sidewalk outside the store, "the Officer of the Law who had previously entered [the] store" arrested petitioner on a groundless charge of vagrancy and took her into custody.
On the basis of these underlying facts petitioner alleged that Kress and the Hattiesburg police had conspired (1) "to deprive [her] of her right to enjoy equal treatment and service in a place of public accommodation";
A. CONSPIRACIES BETWEEN PUBLIC OFFICIALS AND PRIVATE PERSONS—GOVERNING PRINCIPLES
The terms of § 1983 make plain two elements that are necessary for recovery. First, the plaintiff must prove that the defendant has deprived him of a right secured by the "Constitution and laws" of the United States. Second, the plaintiff must show that the defendant deprived him of this constitutional right "under color of any statute, ordinance, regulation, custom, or usage, of any State or Territory." This second element requires that the plaintiff show that the defendant acted "under color of law."
As noted earlier we read both counts of petitioner's complaint to allege discrimination based on race in violation of petitioner's equal protection rights.
The involvement of a state official in such a conspiracy plainly provides the state action essential to show a direct violation of petitioner's Fourteenth Amendment equal protection rights, whether or not the actions of the police were officially authorized, or lawful; Monroe v. Pape, 365 U.S. 167 (1961); see United States v. Classic, 313 U.S. 299, 326 (1941); Screws v. United States, 325 U.S. 91, 107-111 (1945); Williams v. United States, 341 U.S. 97, 99-100 (1951). Moreover, a private party involved in such a conspiracy, even though not an official of the State, can be liable under § 1983. "Private persons, jointly engaged with state officials in the prohibited action, are acting `under color' of law for purposes of the statute. To act `under color' of law does not require that the accused be an officer of the State. It is enough that he is a willful participant in joint activity with the State or its agents," United States v. Price, 383 U.S. 787, 794 (1966).
B. SUMMARY JUDGMENT
We now proceed to consider whether the District Court erred in granting summary judgment on the conspiracy count. In granting respondent's motion, the District Court simply stated that there was "no evidence in the complaint or in the affidavits and other papers from which a `reasonably-minded person' might draw an inference of conspiracy," 252 F. Supp., at 144, aff'd, 409 F. 2d, at 126-127. Our own scrutiny of the factual allegations of petitioner's complaint, as well as the material found in the affidavits and depositions presented by Kress to the District Court, however, convinces us that summary judgment was improper here, for we think respondent failed to carry its burden of showing the absence of any genuine issue of fact. Before explaining why this is so, it is useful to state the factual arguments, made by the parties concerning summary judgment, and the reasoning of the courts below.
In moving for summary judgment, Kress argued that "uncontested facts" established that no conspiracy existed between any Kress employee and the police. To support this assertion, Kress pointed first to the statements in the deposition of the store manager (Mr. Powell) that (a) he had not communicated with the police,
Petitioner, in opposing summary judgment, pointed out that respondent had failed in its moving papers to dispute the allegation in petitioner's complaint, a statement at her deposition,
We think that on the basis of this record, it was error to grant summary judgment. As the moving party, respondent had the burden of showing the absence of a genuine issue as to any material fact, and for these purposes the material it lodged must be viewed in the light most favorable to the opposing party.
It is true that Mr. Powell, the store manager, claimed in his deposition that he had not seen or communicated with a policeman prior to his tacit signal to Miss Baggett, the supervisor of the food counter. But respondent did not submit any affidavits from Miss Baggett,
Given these unexplained gaps in the materials submitted by respondent, we conclude that respondent failed to fulfill its initial burden of demonstrating what is a critical element in this aspect of the case—that there was no policeman in the store. If a policeman were present, we think it would be open to a jury, in light of the sequence that followed, to infer from the circumstances that the policeman and a Kress employee had a "meeting of the minds" and thus reached an understanding that petitioner should be refused service. Because "[o]n summary judgment the inferences to be drawn from the underlying facts contained in [the moving party's] materials must be viewed in the light
Pointing to Rule 56 (e), as amended in 1963,
This argument does not withstand scrutiny, however, for both the commentary on and background of the 1963 amendment conclusively show that it was not intended to modify the burden of the moving party under Rule 56 (c) to show initially the absence of a genuine issue concerning any material fact.
If respondent had met its initial burden by, for example, submitting affidavits from the policemen denying their presence in the store at the time in question, Rule 56 (e) would then have required petitioner to have done more than simply rely on the contrary allegation in her complaint. To have avoided conceding this fact for purposes of summary judgment, petitioner would have had to come forward with either (1) the affidavit of someone who saw the policeman in the store or (2) an affidavit under Rule 56 (f) explaining why at that time it was impractical to do so. Even though not essential here to defeat
There remains to be discussed the substantive count of petitioner's complaint, and the showing necessary for petitioner to prove that respondent refused her service "under color of any . . . custom, or usage, of [the] State" in violation of her rights under the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.
A. CUSTOM OR USAGE
We are first confronted with the issue of whether a "custom" for purposes of § 1983 must have the force of law, or whether, as argued in dissent, no state involvement is required. Although this Court has never explicitly decided this question, we do not interpret the statute against an amorphous backdrop.
What is now 42 U. S. C. § 1983 came into existence as § 1 of the Ku Klux Klan Act of April 20, 1871, 17 Stat. 13. The Chairman of the House Select Committee which drafted this legislation described
Quite apart from this Court's construction of the identical "under color of" provision of § 2 of the 1866 Act, the legislative history of § 1 of the 1871 Act, the lineal ancestor of § 1983, also indicates that the provision in question here was intended to encompass only conduct supported by state action. That such a limitation was intended for § 1 can be seen from an examination of the statements and actions of both the supporters and opponents of the Ku Klux Klan Act.
That Congress intended to limit the scope of § 1 to actions taken under color of law is further seen by contrasting its legislative history with that of other sections of the same Act. On the one hand, there was comparatively little debate over § 1 of the Ku Klux Klan Act, and it was eventually enacted in form identical to that in which it was introduced in the House.
In addition to the legislative history, there exists an unbroken line of decisions, extending back many years, in which this Court has declared that action "under color of law" is a predicate for a cause of action under § 1983,
Congress included customs and usages within its definition of law in § 1983 because of the persistent and widespread discriminatory practices of state officials in some areas of the post-bellum South. As Representative Garfield said: "[E]ven where the laws are just and equal on their face, yet, by a systematic maladministration of them, or a neglect or refusal to enforce their provisions, a portion of the people are denied equal protection under them."
This interpretation of custom recognizes that settled practices of state officials may, by imposing sanctions or withholding benefits, transform private predilections into compulsory rules of behavior no less than legislative pronouncements. If authority be needed for this truism, it can be found in Nashville, C. & St. L. R. Co. v. Browning, 310 U.S. 362 (1940), where the Court held that although a statutory provision suggested a different note, the "law" in Tennessee as established by longstanding practice of state officials was that railroads and public utilities were taxed at full cash value. What Justice Frankfurter wrote there seems equally apt here:
And in circumstances more closely analogous to the case at hand, the statements of the chief of police and mayor of New Orleans, as interpreted by the Court
B. STATE ACTION—14TH AMENDMENT VIOLATION
For petitioner to recover under the substantive count of her complaint, she must show a deprivation of a right guaranteed to her by the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. Since the "action inhibited by the first section of the Fourteenth Amendment is only such action as may fairly be said to be that of the States," Shelley v. Kraemer, 334 U.S. 1, 13 (1948), we must decide, for purposes of this case, the following "state action" issue: Is there sufficient state action to prove a violation of petitioner's Fourteenth Amendment rights if she shows that Kress refused her service because of a state-enforced custom compelling segregation of the races in Hattiesburg restaurants?
In analyzing this problem, it is useful to state two polar propositions, each of which is easily identified and resolved. On the one hand, the Fourteenth Amendment plainly prohibits a State itself from discriminating because of race. On the other hand, § 1 of the Fourteenth Amendment does not forbid a private party, not acting against a backdrop of state compulsion or involvement, to discriminate on the basis of race in his personal affairs as an expression of his own personal predilections. As was said in Shelley v. Kraemer, supra, § 1 of "[t]hat Amendment erects no shield against merely private conduct, however discriminatory or wrongful." 334 U. S., at 13.
The question most relevant for this case, however, is a slightly different one. It is whether the decision of an owner of a restaurant to discriminate on the basis of race under the compulsion of state law offends the Fourteenth Amendment. Although this Court has not explicitly decided the Fourteenth Amendment state action issue implicit in this question, underlying the Court's decisions in the sit-in cases is the notion that a State is responsible for the discriminatory act of a private party when the State, by its law, has compelled the act. As the Court said in Peterson v. City of Greenville, 373 U.S. 244, 248 (1963): "When the State has commanded a particular result, it has saved to itself the power to determine that result and thereby `to a significant extent' has `become involved' in it." Moreover, there is much support in lower court opinions for the conclusion that discriminatory acts by private parties done under the compulsion of state law offend the Fourteenth
For state action purposes it makes no difference of course whether the racially discriminatory act by the private party is compelled by a statutory provision or by a custom having the force of law—in either case it is the State that has commanded the result by its law. Without deciding whether less substantial involvement of a State might satisfy the state action requirement of the Fourteenth Amendment, we conclude that petitioner would show an abridgment of her equal protection right, if she proves that Kress refused her service because of a state-enforced custom of segregating the races in public restaurants.
C. THREE ADDITIONAL POINTS
For purposes of remand, we consider it appropriate to make three additional points.
First, the District Court's pretrial opinion seems to suggest that the exclusive means available to petitioner for demonstrating that state enforcement of the custom relevant here would be by showing that the State used its criminal trespass statute for this purpose. We disagree with the District Court's implicit assumption that a custom can have the force of law only if it is enforced
Third, both the District Court and the majority opinion in the Court of Appeals suggested that petitioner would have to show that the relevant custom existed throughout the State, and that proof that it had the force of law in Hattiesburg—a political subdivision of the State—was insufficient. This too we think was error. In the same way that a law whose source is a town ordinance can offend the Fourteenth Amendment even though it has less than state-wide application, so too can a custom with the force of law in a political subdivision of a State offend the Fourteenth Amendment even though it lacks state-wide application.
In summary, if petitioner can show (1) the existence of a state-enforced custom of segregating the races in public eating places in Hattiesburg at the time of the incident
For the foregoing reasons we think petitioner is entitled to a new trial on the substantive count of her complaint.
The judgment of the Court of Appeals is reversed, and the case is remanded to that court for further proceedings consistent with this opinion.
It is so ordered.
MR. JUSTICE MARSHALL took no part in the decision of this case.
The petitioner, Sandra Adickes, brought suit against the respondent, S. H. Kress & Co., to recover damages for alleged violations of 42 U. S. C. § 1983. In one count of her complaint she alleged that a police officer of the City of Hattiesburg, Mississippi, had conspired with employees of Kress to deprive her of rights secured by the Constitution and that this joint action of a state official and private individuals was sufficient to constitute a violation of § 1983. She further alleged in another count that Kress' refusal to serve her while she was in the company of Negroes was action "under color of" a custom of refusing to serve Negroes and whites together in Mississippi, and that this action was a violation of § 1983. The trial judge granted a motion for summary judgment in favor of Kress on the conspiracy allegation and, after full presentation of evidence by the petitioner, granted a motion for a directed verdict in favor of the respondent on the custom allegation. Both decisions rested on conclusions that there were no issues of fact supported by sufficient evidence to require a jury trial. I think the trial court and the Court of Appeals which affirmed were wrong in allowing summary judgment on the conspiracy allegation. And—assuming for present purposes that the trial court's statutory interpretation concerning "custom or usage" was correct—it was also error to direct a verdict on that count. In my judgment, on this record, petitioner should have been permitted to have the jury consider both her claims.
Summary judgments may be granted only when "the pleadings, depositions, answers to interrogatories, and admissions on file, together with the affidavits, if any, show that there is no genuine issue as to any material fact . . . ." Fed. Rule Civ. Proc. 56 (c). Petitioner in this case alleged that she went into Kress in the company of Negroes
The existence or nonexistence of a conspiracy is essentially a factual issue that the jury, not the trial judge, should decide. In this case petitioner may have had to prove her case by impeaching the store's witnesses and appealing to the jury to disbelieve all that they said was true in the affidavits. The right to confront, cross-examine and impeach adverse witnesses is one of the most fundamental rights sought to be preserved by the Seventh Amendment provision for jury trials in civil cases. The advantages of trial before a live jury with live witnesses, and all the possibilities of considering the human factors, should not be eliminated by substituting trial by affidavit and the sterile bareness of summary judgment. "It is only when the witnesses are present and subject to cross-examination that their credibility and the weight to be given their testimony can be appraised. Trial by affidavit is no substitute for trial by jury which so long has been the hallmark of `even handed justice.'" Poller v. Columbia Broadcasting, 368 U.S. 464, 473 (1962).
Second, it was error for the trial judge to direct a verdict in favor of the respondent on the "custom"
Petitioner testified at trial as follows:
I do not find it necessary at this time to pass on the validity of the statutory provision concerning "custom or usage" or on the trial court's views, concurred in by the Court of Appeals, on the proper interpretation of that term. Assuming that the trial court's interpretation was correct and that the provision as so interpreted is valid, there was enough evidence in this record to warrant submitting the entire question of custom or usage to the jury in accordance with instructions framed to reflect those views.
For the foregoing reasons I concur in the judgment reversing the Court of Appeals and remanding for a new trial on both counts.
MR. JUSTICE DOUGLAS, dissenting in part.
The statutory words "under color of any statute, ordinance, regulation, custom, or usage, of any State," 42 U. S. C. § 1983, are seriously emasculated by today's ruling. Custom, it is said, must have "the force of law"; and "law," as I read the opinion, is used in the Hamiltonian sense.
Section 1983 by its terms protects all "rights" that are "secured by the Constitution and laws" of the United States. There is no more basic "right" than the exemption from discrimination on account of race—an exemption that stems not only from the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment but also from the Thirteenth Amendment and from a myriad of "laws" enacted by Congress. And so far as § 1983 is concerned it is sufficient that the deprivation of that right be "under color" of "any . . . custom . . . of any State." The "custom" to be actionable must obviously reflect more than the prejudices of a few; it must reflect the dominant communal sentiment.
The "custom . . . of any State" can of course include the predominant attitude backed by some direct or indirect sanctions inscribed in law books. Thus in Garner v. Louisiana, 368 U.S. 157, another restaurant case involving racial discrimination, there was no state law or municipal ordinance that in terms required segregation of the races in restaurants. But segregation was basic to the structure of Louisiana as a community as revealed by a mosaic of laws. Id., at 179-181 (concurring opinion).
The same is true of Mississippi in the present case.
In 1964, at the time of the discrimination perpetrated in this case, there were numerous Mississippi laws that were designed to continue a regime of segregation of
The situation was thus similar to that which existed in Garner. Although there was no law that in terms required segregation of the races in restaurants, it was plain that the discrimination was perpetrated pursuant to a deeply entrenched custom in Louisiana that was "at least as powerful as any law." Garner v. Louisiana, supra, at 181 (concurring opinion); cf. Robinson v. Florida, 378 U.S. 153, 156.
The "custom . . . of any State," however, can be much more pervasive. It includes the unwritten commitment, stronger than ordinances, statutes, and regulations, by which men live and arrange their lives. Bronislaw Malinowski, the famed anthropologist, in speaking of the "cake of custom" of a Melanesian community "safeguarding life, property and personality" said:
This concept of "custom" is, I think, universal and as relevant here as elsewhere. It makes apparent that our problem under 42 U. S. C. § 1983 does not make our sole aim the search for "state action" in the Hamiltonian sense of "law."
That restricted kind of a search certainly is not compelled by grammar. "Of" is a word of many meanings, one of which indicates "the thing or person whence anything originates, comes, is acquired or sought." 7 Oxford English Dictionary (definition III). The words "under color of any . . . custom . . . of any State" do no more than describe the geographical area or political entity in which the "custom" originates and where it is found.
The philosophy of the Black Codes reached much further than the sanctions actually prescribed in them. Federal judges, who entered the early school desegregation
Is not the maintenance of that line by habit a "custom?"
Title 42 U. S. C. § 1983 was derived from § 1 of the "Ku Klux Klan Act" of 1871, 17 Stat. 13. The "under color of" provisions of § 1 of the 1871 Act, in turn, were derived from § 2 of the Civil Rights Act of 1866, 14 Stat. 27. The meaning of "under color of . . . custom" in the context of the 1866 Act is therefore relevant to the meaning of that phrase as it is used in § 1983, for, as the Court states, the "under color of" provisions mean the same thing for § 1983 as they do for 18 U. S. C. § 242, the direct descendant of § 2 of the 1866 Act.
Of course, § 2 of the 1866 Act did not cover purely private actions as did § 1 of the Act, and that was the point of our discussion of § 2 in Jones v. Alfred H. Mayer Co. But the Court does not come to grips with the fact that actions taken "under color of any . . . custom" were covered by § 2 of the 1866 Act quite apart from
Section 2, like § 1, involved in Jones v. Alfred H. Mayer Co., was bottomed on the Thirteenth Amendment, for it was enacted before the Fourteenth Amendment was adopted. As we stated in Jones v. Alfred H. Mayer Co.:
While the Privileges and Immunities Clause, the Due Process Clause, and the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment are each protective of the individual as against "state" action, the guarantees of the Thirteenth Amendment and various laws of the United States are not so restricted. And § 1983 protects not only Fourteenth Amendment rights, but "any rights . . . secured by the Constitution and laws." With regard to § 1983's scope of protection for violations of these rights, Congress in § 1983 aimed partly at "state" action and it was with that aspect of it that we were concerned in Monroe v. Pape, 365 U.S. 167.
If the wrong done to the individual was under "color" of "custom" alone, the ingredients of the cause of action were satisfied.
Moreover, a majority of the Court held in United States v. Guest, 383 U.S. 745, 761, 774, 782 and n. 6, that § 5 of the Fourteenth Amendment enables Congress to punish interferences with constitutional rights "whether or not state officers or others acting under the color of state law are implicated." Id., at 782. There the statute involved (18 U. S. C. § 241) proscribed all conspiracies to impair any right "secured" by the Constitution. A majority agreed that in order for a conspiracy to qualify it need not involve any "state" action. By the same reasoning the "custom . . . of any State" as used in § 1983 need not involve official state development, maintenance, or participation. The reach of § 1983 is constitutional rights, including those under the Fourteenth Amendment; and Congress rightfully was concerned with their full protection, whoever might be the instigator or offender.
To repeat, § 1983 was "one of the means whereby Congress exercised the power vested in it by § 5 of the Fourteenth Amendment to enforce the provisions of that Amendment." Monroe v. Pape, supra, at 171. Yet powers exercised by Congress may stem from more than one constitutional source. McCulloch v. Maryland, 4 Wheat. 316, 421; Veazie Bank v. Fenno, 8 Wall. 533, 548-549; Edye v. Robertson, 112 U.S. 580, 595-596; United States v. Gettysburg Electric R. Co., 160 U.S. 668, 683. Moreover, § 1983 protects "any rights" that are "secured" by "the Constitution and laws"
It is time we stopped being niggardly in construing civil rights legislation. It is time we kept up with Congress and construed its laws in the full amplitude needed to rid their enforcement of the lingering tolerance for racial discrimination that we sanction today.
MR. JUSTICE BRENNAN, concurring in part and dissenting in part.
Petitioner contends that in 1964 respondent, while acting "under color of . . . statute" or "under color of . . . custom, or usage" of the State of Mississippi, subjected her to the deprivation of her right under the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment not to be denied service in respondent's restaurant due to racial discrimination in which the State of Mississippi was involved, and that therefore respondent is liable to her in damages under 42 U. S. C. § 1983. To recover under § 1983 petitioner must prove two separate and independent elements: first, that respondent subjected her to the
Whether a person suing under § 1983 must show state action in the first element—the deprivation of a right "secured by the Constitution and laws"—depends on the nature of the particular right asserted. For example, a person may be deprived of a right secured by the Constitution and 42 U. S. C. § 1982 by a private person acting completely independently of state government. See Jones v. Alfred H. Mayer Co., 392 U.S. 409 (1968). On the other hand, the constitutional right to equal protection of the laws, unelaborated by any statute, can be violated only by action involving a State. The discussion in United States v. Reese, 92 U.S. 214, 249-252 (1876) (Hunt, J., dissenting), of various constitutional uses of the word "State" suggests that as an original matter "State" in the Equal Protection Clause might have been interpreted in any of several ways. Moreover, some have thought that historical evidence points to an interpretation covering some categories of state inaction in the face of wholly private conduct, see, e. g., Bell v. Maryland, 378 U.S. 226, 286-316 (1964) (Goldberg, J., concurring); R. Harris, The Quest for Equality 24-56 (1960); J. tenBroek, Equal Under Law 201-239 (1965). However, our cases have held that the Equal Protection Clause applies only to action by state government or officials and those significantly involved with them. Shelley v. Kraemer, 334 U.S. 1, 13 (1948); Burton v. Wilmington Parking Authority, 365 U.S. 715, 721-722 (1961). Whether and when a person suing under § 1983 must show state action in the second element—action under color of a statute, ordinance, regulation, custom, or
In the present case petitioner alleged as the first element under § 1983 a deprivation of her right to equal protection. Therefore, under our cases, she must show state action. She asserts that there was state action in two different respects. First, she contends that there was a conspiracy between respondent and local police to discriminate against her in restaurant service because she, a white person, sought service while accompanied by Negro friends. The Court treats this aspect of her claim in Part I of its opinion, which I join.
The state-action doctrine reflects the profound judgment that denials of equal treatment, and particularly denials on account of race or color, are singularly grave when government has or shares responsibility for them. Government is the social organ to which all in our society look for the promotion of liberty, justice, fair and equal treatment, and the setting of worthy norms and goals for social conduct. Therefore something is uniquely amiss in a society where the government, the authoritative oracle of community values, involves itself in racial
Among the state-action cases that most nearly resemble the present one are the sit-in cases decided in 1963 and 1964. In Peterson v. City of Greenville, 373 U.S. 244 (1963), the petitioners were convicted of trespass for refusing to leave a lunch counter at a Kress store in South Carolina. A Greenville ordinance at that time imposed on the proprietors of restaurants the duty to segregate the races in their establishments, and there was evidence that the Kress manager was aware of the ordinance. We held that the existence of the ordinance, together with a showing that the Kress manager excluded the petitioners solely because they were Negroes, was sufficient to constitute discriminatory state action in violation of the Fourteenth Amendment:
The rationale of Peterson was extended in Lombard v. Louisiana, 373 U.S. 267 (1963). There the petitioners were convicted of trespass for refusing to leave a restaurant after being denied service. Prior to the arrests the mayor and superintendent of police of New Orleans had publicly stated that sit-in demonstrations were undesirable and that relevant trespass laws would be fully enforced. Although these statements, unlike the ordinance in Peterson, were not discriminatory on their face, the Court interpreted them
The principles of Peterson and Lombard were extended further in Robinson v. Florida, 378 U.S. 153 (1964). That case also involved trespass convictions arising out of a sit-in at a segregated restaurant. At the time, a Florida regulation required restaurants to maintain separate lavatory and toilet facilities for each race as well as each sex. However, the regulation did not require segregation of a restaurant itself; nor did the
Robinson involved neither a state command of restaurant segregation, as in Peterson, nor a state policy of enforcing restaurant segregation, as in Lombard. It involved state imposition of burdens amounting to discouragement of private integration. It is true that the burden in that case happened to take the form of a requirement of segregated lavatory facilities; but any other burden—for example, a tax on integrated restaurants —would have sufficed to render the privately chosen restaurant segregation unconstitutional state action. Again, the Court's finding of state action did not depend on the use of the State's trespass law. Robinson thus stands for the proposition that state discouragement of a particular kind of privately chosen integration renders that kind of privately chosen segregation unconstitutional state action.
The step from Peterson, Lombard, and Robinson to the present case is a small one. Indeed, it may be no step at all, since those cases together hold that a state
To establish the existence in 1964 of a state statutory policy to maintain segregation in restaurant facilities, petitioner relies principally on Miss. Code Ann. § 2046.5 (1956), which, on its face, "authorizes" and "empowers" owners of hotels, restaurants, and other places of public accommodation and amusement to refuse to serve whomsoever they choose.
Burton involved a statute that permitted a restaurateur to refuse service to "persons whose reception or entertainment by him would be offensive to the major part of his customers . . . ." MR. JUSTICE STEWART took the position that the state courts had "construed this legislative enactment as authorizing discriminatory classification based exclusively on color." 365 U. S., at 726-727. Justices Frankfurter, HARLAN, and Whittaker, the only other Justices who dealt at length with the statute,
The language of § 2046.5 is considerably broader than that involved in Burton. Although § 2046.5 apparently has not been authoritatively interpreted by the state courts, its plain language clearly authorizes a restaurateur to refuse service for any reason, which obviously includes a refusal based upon race. Were there any conceivable doubt that § 2046.5 was intended to authorize, inter alia, "discriminatory classification based exclusively on color," it is completely dispelled by a consideration of the historical context in which § 2046.5 was enacted.
A legislative or constitutional provision need not be considered in isolation, but may be examined "in terms of its `immediate objective,' its `ultimate effect' and its `historical context and the conditions existing prior to its enactment.' " Reitman v. Mulkey, supra, at 373; cf. Lombard v. Louisiana, supra. Through the 1950's and 1960's Mississippi had a "steel-hard, inflexible, undeviating official policy of segregation." United States v. City of Jackson, 318 F.2d 1, 5 (C. A. 5th Cir. 1963) (Wisdom, J.). See generally J. Silver, Mississippi: The Closed Society (1964). Section 2046.5 itself was originally enacted in 1956 in the wake of our decisions in Brown v. Board of Education, 347 U.S. 483 (1954); 349 U.S. 294 (1955). It was passed contemporaneously with numerous statutes and resolutions condemning Brown,
Illustrative of the practical effect of these various provisions is the incident that gave rise to this litigation.
In sum, it may be said of the various statutes and resolutions that constituted Mississippi's response to Brown that "they are bound together as the parts of a single plan. The plan may make the parts unlawful." Swift & Co. v. United States, 196 U.S. 375, 396 (1905) (Holmes, J.). Section 2046.5 was an integral part of this scheme to foster and encourage the practice of segregation in places of public accommodation and elsewhere, which it furthered by authorizing discrimination and by affording those who elected to discriminate on the basis of race a remedy under state law. Indeed, it is difficult to conceive of any purpose for the enactment of § 2046.5 other than to make clear the authorization of private discrimination where such express authorization did not exist previously. Cf. Mulkey v. Reitman, 64 Cal.2d 529,
Judge Waterman, dissenting in the Court of Appeals, states that under the common law an innkeeper, and by analogy a restaurateur, did not have the right to serve only whomever he wished and to discriminate on the basis of race in selecting his customers. 409 F.2d 121, 131-133. See Bell v. Maryland, 378 U.S. 226, 296-300 (1964) (Goldberg, J., concurring). Since the common law is presumed to apply in Mississippi, Western Union Telegraph Co. v. Goodman, 166 Miss. 782, 146 So. 128 (1933), Judge Waterman concludes that the State has "drastically changed the common law" by enacting § 2046.5.
It is not completely clear, however, that the common law in regard to innkeepers and restaurateurs, as understood by Judge Waterman, was ever widely enforced in Mississippi in racial matters. In Reconstruction times
The remaining question concerning this aspect of the present case is what nexus between § 2046.5 and respondent's alleged discrimination petitioner must show to establish that that discrimination is state action violative of the Fourteenth Amendment. Our prior decisions leave no doubt that the mere existence of efforts by the State, through legislation or otherwise, to authorize, encourage, or otherwise support racial discrimination in a particular facet of life constitutes illegal state involvement in those pertinent private acts of discrimination that subsequently occur. See, e. g., Peterson v. City of Greenville, supra; Lombard v. Louisiana, supra; Robinson v. Florida,
I turn now to the other elements of petitioner's case under § 1983.
Title 42 U. S. C. § 1983 derives from § 1 of the Civil Rights Act of 1871, 17 Stat. 13, entitled, "An Act to enforce the Provisions of the Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States, and for other Purposes."
Stirred to action by the wholesale breakdown of protection of civil rights in the South, Congress carried to completion the creation of a comprehensive scheme of remedies—civil, criminal, and military
In the 1871 Act, Congress undertook to provide broad federal civil remedies against interference with the exercise and actual enjoyment of constitutional rights, particularly the right to equal protection. Section 1 (now § 1983) provided a civil remedy for deprivation of any constitutional right by a person acting "under color of any law, statute, ordinance, regulation, custom, or usage of any State . . . ." Section 2 (now surviving
The history of this scheme of remedies for the protection of civil rights was, until very recently, one of virtual nullification by this Court. Key provisions were declared unconstitutional or given an unduly narrow construction wholly out of keeping with their purposes.
Section 241 of 18 U. S. C. fared little better. That statute, as indicated, deals generally with conspiracies to interfere with the exercise of federal rights. It was established soon after its enactment that § 241 reaches conspiracies among private persons to interfere with "rights which arise from the relationship of the individual and the Federal Government." United States v. Williams, 341 U.S. 70, 77 (1951) (opinion of Frankfurter, J.). See, e. g., Ex parte Yarbrough, 110 U.S. 651 (1884); United States v. Waddell, 112 U.S. 76 (1884); Logan v. United States, 144 U.S. 263 (1892); In re Quarles, 158 U.S. 532 (1895). However, the concept of "arising from" was given a very narrow construction in United States v. Cruikshank, 92 U.S. 542 (1876). Moreover, in United States v. Williams, supra, the Court divided 4 to 4 on the question whether § 241 reaches private conspiracies to
Although the other principal criminal statute protecting civil rights, 18 U. S. C. § 242, the criminal analogue to § 1983, was construed to protect Fourteenth Amendment rights, it was nonetheless held constitutional. However, under this statute a violation can be found only if the defendant acted "willfully," that is, with "a specific intent to deprive a person of a federal right made definite by decision or other rule of law." See Screws v. United States, 325 U.S. 91, 103 (1945). Moreover, this Court has never had occasion to consider whether § 242 reaches wholly nonofficial conduct.
Thus, until very recently, the construction of the surviving remedial civil rights statutes was narrowed or placed in doubt by a restrictive view of the power of Congress under § 5 of the Fourteenth Amendment. But that view of congressional power has now been completely rejected by this Court.
In United States v. Guest, 383 U.S. 745 (1966), and United States v. Price, 383 U.S. 787 (1966), the Court expressly held that § 241 does protect Fourteenth Amendment rights, thereby squarely resolving the issue that divided the court in Williams. Because the conspiracy in Guest was alleged to have been carried out by private persons acting in conjunction with state officials,
See also South Carolina v. Katzenbach, 383 U.S. 301 (1966).
Thus the holding of Harris and the Civil Rights Cases, 109 U.S. 3 (1883), that Congress cannot under § 5 protect the exercise of Fourteenth Amendment rights from private interference has been overruled. See United States v. Guest, supra, at 782-783 (opinion of BRENNAN,
Petitioner contends that respondent's discrimination against her was within the scope of § 1983 on either of two grounds. First, she claims that respondent acted under color of Mississippi statutory law, and in particular Mississippi Code § 2046.5. Second, she claims that respondent acted under color of a custom or usage of Mississippi, which prescribed segregation of the races in dining facilities.
Petitioner's claim that respondent acted under color of Mississippi statutory law is similar to her claim that respondent's action constituted state action. Indeed, the two claims would be proved by the same factual showing if respondent were a state official who acted by virtue of his official capacity or a private party acting in conjunction with such state official, for when a state official acts by virtue of his official capacity it is precisely the use or misuse of state authority that makes the action state action. However, when a private party acts alone,
Petitioner's second contention, that respondent discriminated againt her "under color of [a] custom, or usage" of Mississippi, presents more difficulty. I have found few prior cases construing the phrase "under color of custom, or usage" in the context of § 1983;
The legislative history of § 1983 provides no direct guidance for the interpretation of the phrase "custom or usage." Much of the lengthy debate concerned the truth of the allegations of KKK outrages and the constitutionality and wisdom of other sections of the Act. Little attention was given to the precise wording of § 1983, and there was no sustained discussion of the meaning of "custom or usage."
In seeking to determine the purposes of § 1983, it is important to recall that it originated as part of a statute directed against the depredations of a private army. Cong. Globe, 42d Cong., 1st Sess., 339 (remarks of Rep. Kelley, a supporter of the bill). The Klan was recognized by Congress to be a widespread conspiracy "operating wholly outside the law," Jones v. Alfred H. Mayer Co., supra, at 436, and employing a variety of methods to coerce Negroes and others to forgo exercise of civil rights theoretically protected by the Constitution and federal statutes. In some areas of the South the Klan was strong enough to paralyze the operations of state government. As Representative Coburn, a supporter of the bill, noted:
See also id., at App. 172 (remarks of Sen. Pool, a supporter); id., at 653 (remarks of Sen. Osborn, a supporter); id., at 155-160 (remarks of Sen. Sherman, a supporter). Thus the mischief that the legislation of 1871 was intended to remedy derived, not from state action, but from concerted "private" action that the States were unwilling or unable to cope with.
Senator Schurz, a moderate opponent who on behalf of the President had personally investigated the disorders in the South, summed up the condition to be dealt with:
Representative [later President] Garfield, a moderate supporter, focused more specifically on one of the principal evils § 1983 was designed to remedy:
Accordingly, in his view, § 1983 was intended to provide a remedy in federal court for, inter alia, certain denials of equal protection that occurred even in States with just and equal laws when some private persons acted against others and the State failed to provide protection. Thus, both the House and the Senate were quite aware that the task before them was to devise a scheme of remedies against privately instigated interference with the exercise of constitutional rights, through terror, force of numbers, concerted action, and other means.
The debates in both Houses also make it clear that many of those who gave the most careful attention to the conditions that called for the bill, to the provisions of the bill itself, and to the problems of constitutionality and policy it presented, did not think that in § 1983 the Federal Government undertook to provide a federal remedy for every isolated act by private persons that
Near the conclusion of the debate, Rep. Garfield observed:
This statute, "trenchant" but measured, provided a scheme of three civil remedies, currently codified in §§ 1983, 1985, and 1986. In view of the purposes these remedies were designed to achieve, § 1983 would be read too narrowly if it were restricted to acts of state officials and those acting in concert with them. Congress did not say, "Every state official and others acting
The first category is that involving action under color of authority derived from state government and this category of invasions is clearly within § 1983. Where state officials or private persons acting consciously with state support participate in the interference with the exercise of federal rights, the interference assumes a far graver cast than it otherwise would have, and the authority of the State is brought into conflict with the authority of the Constitution. See, e. g., Monroe v. Pape, supra, at 238 (opinion of Frankfurter, J.).
The second category is that involving conspiracy, which is within the ambit of § 1985. It is well recognized in the criminal law that conspiratorial agreements for concerted action present aggravated dangers to society, see United States v. Rabinowich, 238 U.S. 78, 88 (1915); Pinkerton v. United States, 328 U.S. 640, 644 (1946); Krulewitch v. United States, 336 U.S. 440, 448-449 (1949) (Jackson, J., concurring); Note, Developments in the Law—Criminal Conspiracy, 72 Harv. L. Rev. 920, 923-924 (1959), and for this general reason, as exemplified in the activities of the Ku Klux Klan, Congress provided for a civil remedy against conspiratorial interference with the right to equal protection.
The excerpts from the congressional debate that I have quoted make clear that Congress wanted a civil remedy, not only against conspiratorial violence, but also against the perhaps more subtle but potentially more virulent customary infringements of constitutional rights. The Ku Klux Klan was an extreme reflection of broadly held attitudes toward Negroes and longstanding practices of denying them rights that the Constitution secured for all people. The fundamental evil was a "diseased public sentiment" reflected in multifarious efforts to confine Negroes in their former status of inferiority. Accordingly, a statute designed to reach "down into the very heart of the Ku Klux organization" had to deal with the widespread manifestations of that diseased public
As this Court recently said in construing another of the early civil rights statutes, "We think that history leaves no doubt that, if we are to give [the statute] the scope that its origins dictate, we must accord it a sweep as broad as its language." United States v. Price, supra, at 801. The language of § 1983 imposes no obstacle to an interpretation carrying out the congressional purposes I have identified. I think it clearly possible for a private person or entity like respondent to "subject" a person or "[cause him] to be subjected . . . to the deprivation" of a constitutional right, as those quoted words are used in § 1983. In Monroe v. Pape, supra, we held that a cause of action was stated under § 1983 by an allegation that police officers invaded petitioners' home in violation of the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments. Certainly if "deprivation" in § 1983 means something like "extinguishment," then no cause of action could have been stated, for no policeman, nor even any state government as a whole, can extinguish a constitutional right, at least not while this Court sits. Cf. Panhandle Oil Co., v. Knox, 277 U.S. 218, 223 (Holmes, J., dissenting).
In discussing petitioner's contention that respondent acted under color of state law I have already indicated my understanding of the words "under color of." See supra, at 211-212. I would apply that understanding here as well. I read "custom, or usage" in § 1983 to mean what it has usually meant at common law—a widespread and longstanding practice, commonly regarded as prescribing norms for conduct, and backed by sanctions.
This language was quoted in the debate. See Cong. Globe, 42d Cong., 1st Sess., App. 80 (remarks of Rep. A. Perry). When the word "State" in § 1983 is so understood, then it is not at all strained or tortured— indeed, it is perfectly natural—to read "custom" as meaning simply "custom" in the enumeration "statute, ordinance, regulation, custom, or usage, of any State." Moreover, I agree with the Court that just as an ordinance can be state action, so, too, can a custom of a subdivision of a State be a custom "of [a] State" for purposes of § 1983; and in my view a custom of the people living in a subdivision is a custom of the subdivision. Thus a person acts under color of a custom or usage of a State when there is among the people of a State or subdivision of a State a widespread and longstanding practice regarded as prescribing norms for conduct and supported by community sentiment or sanctions, and a person acts in accordance with this custom either from a belief that the norms it prescribes authorize or require his conduct or from a belief that the community at large regards it as authorizing or requiring his conduct.
Finally, the Court dwells on the relative lack of controversy over § 1983 in contrast to the heated debate over § 2 of the 1871 Act. However, despite Senator Edmunds' complacent prediction, § 1983 was opposed, and opposed vigorously. Senator Johnston commented, "The Senator from Vermont [Senator Edmunds] said that there would be no objection to the first section of the bill. That section, in my view, has only the slight objection of being unconstitutional." Cong. Globe, 42d Cong., 1st Sess., App. 215. Representative
Moreover, the Court does not adequately characterize the controversy over § 2 of the Act. As originally proposed, § 2 would have made a federal crime of any conspiracy in a State to commit an act that if committed on a federal enclave would constitute "murder, manslaughter, mayhem, robbery, assault and battery, perjury, subornation of perjury, criminal obstruction of legal process or resistance of officers in discharge of official duty, arson, or larceny." See id., at App. 68-69 (remarks of Rep. Shellabarger). Extreme opponents of the bill attacked this section, as they attacked other sections. Moderate opponents objected not because the section reached private conduct but because it ousted the States from a broad range of their criminal jurisdiction even where they were successfully meeting their constitutional obligation to provide equal protection. See, e. g., id., at 366 (remarks of Rep. Arthur, an opponent). Representative Garfield, for example, criticized the original § 2, see id., at App. 153, but praised and voted for the final bill, including § 2, which he understood to reach private conduct, see id., at 807, 808.
On its intrinsic merits, the Court's conclusion that custom "for purposes of § 1983 must have the force of law" would be wholly acceptable if the phrase "force of law" meant, as at common law, merely that custom must have the effect of law—that it be generally regarded as having normative force, whether or not enforced
Since this case is being remanded, I think it proper to express my views on the kinds of relief to which petitioner may be entitled if she should prevail on the merits.
Section 1983 in effect authorizes the federal courts to protect rights "secured by the Constitution and laws" by invoking any of the remedies known to the arsenal of the law. Standards governing the granting of relief under § 1983 are to be developed by the federal courts in accordance with the purposes of the statute and as a matter of federal common law. See Tenney v. Brandhove, 341 U.S. 367 (1951); Monroe v. Pape, supra; Pierson v. Ray, 386 U.S. 547 (1967); Basista v. Weir, 340 F.2d 74, 85-87 (C. A. 3d Cir. 1965); cf. Sullivan v. Little Hunting Park, 396 U.S. 229, 238-240 (1969); J. I. Case Co. v. Borak, 377 U.S. 426, 433-434 (1964). Of course, where justice requires it, federal district courts are duty-bound to enrich the jurisprudence of § 1983 by looking to the remedies provided by the States wherein they sit. 42 U. S. C. § 1988. But resort to state law as such should be had only in cases where for some reason federal remedial law is not and cannot be made adequate to carry out the purposes of the statute.
Section 1983 does not in general impose strict liability on all who come within its prohibitions; certain broad immunities are recognized. See Tenney v. Brandhove, supra; Monroe v. Pape, supra, at 187-192; Pierson v. Ray, supra, at 553-555. In some types of cases where the wrong under § 1983 is closely analogous to a wrong
The appropriateness of any particular remedy in a given case depends on the circumstances of that case, and especially on the degree of culpability of the defendant. In my view, where a plaintiff shows a voluntary denial of equal protection on the ground of race amounting to a violation of § 1983 he is entitled to recover compensation for actual damages, if any, simply on the basis of the proved violation. The question of compensatory damages is one of allocation of actual loss, and, as between the innocent plaintiff and the defendant who deliberately discriminates on the basis of race, I think it just and faithful to the statutory purposes to impose the loss on the discriminator, even if he was unaware that his discrimination constituted state action denying equal protection. Proof of an evil motive or of a specific intent to deprive a person of a constitutional right is generally not required under § 1983. Monroe v. Pape, supra, at 183-187; Whirl v. Kern, supra. And, indeed, in Nixon v. Herndon, 273 U.S. 536 (1927), and Lane v. Wilson, 307 U.S. 268 (1939), this Court upheld complaints seeking
To recover punitive damages, I believe a plaintiff must show more than a bare violation of § 1983. On the other hand, he need not show that the defendant specifically intended to deprive him of a recognized federal right, as is required by the word "willfully" in 18 U. S. C. § 242, see Screws v. United States, supra. Nor need he show actual damages. Basista v. Weir, supra, at 87-88; Tracy v. Robbins, 40 F. R. D. 108, 113 (D. C. S. C. 1966). It is sufficient for the plaintiff to show either that the defendant acted "under color of [a] statute, ordinance, regulation, custom, or usage of any State or Territory," with actual knowledge that he was violating a right "secured by the Constitution and laws," or that the defendant acted with reckless disregard of whether he was thus violating such a right. Cf. C. McCormick, Handbook on the Law of Damages § 79 (1935). However, in my view, a proprietor of a place of public accommodation who discriminates on the basis of race after our decision in Peterson v. City of Greenville, supra, and the enactment of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U. S. C. §§ 2000a to 2000h-6, does so with reckless disregard as a matter of law, and therefore may be found liable for punitive damages.
"Every person who, under color of any statute, ordinance, regulation, custom, or usage, of any State or Territory, subjects, or causes to be subjected, any citizen of the United States or other person within the jurisdiction thereof to the deprivation of any rights, privileges, or immunities secured by the Constitution and laws, shall be liable to the party injured in an action at law, suit in equity, or other proper proceeding for redress."
The language of the complaint might, if read generously, support the contention that petitioner was alleging a violation of Title II, the Public Accommodations provision, of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, 78 Stat. 243, 42 U. S. C. § 2000a. It is clear, and respondent seemingly concedes, that its refusal to serve petitioner was a violation of § 201 of the 1964 Act, 42 U. S. C. § 2000a. It is very doubtful, however, that Kress' violation of Miss Adickes' rights under the Public Accommodations Title could properly serve as a basis for recovery under § 1983. Congress deliberately provided no damages remedy in the Public Accommodations Act itself, and § 207 (b) provides that the injunction remedy of § 206 was the "exclusive means of enforcing the rights based on this title." Moreover, the legislative history makes quite plain that Congress did not intend that violations of the Public Accommodations Title be enforced through the damages provisions of § 1983. See 110 Cong. Rec. 9767 (remark of floor manager that the language of 207 (b) "is necessary because otherwise it . . . would result . . . in civil liability for damages under 42 U. S. C. § 1983"); see also 110 Cong. Rec. 7384, 7405.
In United States v. Johnson, 390 U.S. 563 (1968), the Court held that violations of § 203 (b) of the Public Accommodations Title could serve as the basis for criminal prosecution under 18 U. S. C. § 241 (another civil rights statute) against "outsiders," having no relation to owners and proprietors of places of public accommodations, notwithstanding the "exclusive" remedy provision of § 207 (b). It is doubtful whether the Johnson reasoning would allow recovery under § 1983 for Kress' alleged violation of § 201, and indeed the petitioner does not otherwise contend. The Court, in Johnson, in holding that the § 207 (b) limitation did not apply to violations of § 203, stated: "[T]he exclusive-remedy provision of § 207 (b) was inserted only to make clear that the substantive rights to public accommodation defined in § 201 and § 202 are to be enforced exclusively by injunction." 390 U. S., at 567.
In any event, we think it clear that there can be recovery under § 1983 for conduct that violates the Fourteenth Amendment, even though the same conduct might also violate the Public Accommodations Title which itself neither provides a damages remedy nor can be the basis of a § 1983 action. Section 207 (b) of the Public Accommodations Title expressly provides that nothing in that title "shall preclude any individual . . . from asserting any right based on any other Federal or State law not inconsistent with this title . . . or from pursuing any remedy, civil or criminal, which may be available for the vindication or enforcement of such right." Therefore, quite apart from whether § 207 precludes enforcement of one's rights under the Public Accommodations Title through a damages action under 42 U. S. C. § 1983, we think it evident that enforcement of one's constitutional rights under § 1983 is not "inconsistent" with the Public Accommodations Act.
Powell stated that he had prearranged this tacit signal with Miss Baggett because "there was quite a lot of violence . . . in Hattiesburg" directed towards whites "with colored people, in what you call a mixed group." App. 131.
"On this particular day, just shortly after 12 o'clock, I estimate there was 75 to 100 people in the store, and the lunch counter was pretty—was pretty well to capacity there, full, and I was going up towards the front of the store in one of the aisles, and looking towards the front of the store, and there was a group of colored girls, and a white woman who came into the north door, which was next to the lunch counter.
"And the one thing that really stopped me and called my attention to this group, was the fact that they were dressed alike. They all had on, what looked like a light blue denim skirt. And the best I can remember is that they were—they were almost identical, all of them. And they came into the door, and people coming in stopped to look, and they went on to the booths. And there happened to be two empty there. And one group of them and the white woman sat down in one, and the rest of them sat in the second group.
"And, almost immediately there—I mean this, it didn't take just a few seconds from the time they came into the door to sit down, but, already the people began to mill around the store and started coming over towards the lunch counter. And, by that time I was up close to the candy counter, and I had a wide open view there. And the people had real sour looks on their faces, nobody was joking, or being corny, or carrying on. They looked like a frightened mob. They really did. I have seen mobs before. I was in Korea during the riots in 1954 and 1955. And I know what they are. And this actually got me.
"I looked out towards the front, and we have what they call see-through windows. There is no backs to them. You can look out of the store right into the street. And the north window, it looks right into the lunch counter. 25 or 30 people were standing there looking in, and across the street even, in a jewelry store, people were standing there, and it looked really bad to me. It looked like one person could have yelled `Let's get them,' which has happened before, and cause this group to turn into a mob. And, so, quickly I just made up my mind to avoid the riot, and protect the people that were in the store, and my employees, as far as the people in the mob who were going to get hurt themselves. I just knew that something was going to break loose there." App. 133-134.
"Mr. Powell had made no request of me to arrest Miss Sandra Adickes or any other person, in fact, I did not know Mr. Powell personally until the day of this statement. [But cf. Powell's statement at his deposition, n. 8, supra.] Mr. Powell and I had not discussed the arrest of this person until the day of this statement and we had never previously discussed her in any way." (App. 107.)
"I was contacted on this date by Mr. John H. Williams, Jr., a representative of Genesco, owners of S. H. Kress and Company, who requested that I make a statement concerning alleged conspiracy in connection with the aforesaid arrest.
"This arrest was made on the public streets of Hattiesburg, Mississippi, and was an officers discretion arrest. I had not consulted with Mr. G. T. Powell, Manager of S. H. Kress and Company in Hattiesburg, and did not know his name until this date. No one at the Kress store asked that the arrest be made and I did not consult with anyone prior to the arrest." (App. 110, 112.)
During discovery, petitioner attempted to depose Miss Baggett. However, Kress successfully resisted this by convincing the District Court that Miss Baggett was not a "managing agent," and "was without power to make managerial decisions."
"When a motion for summary judgment is made and supported as provided in this rule, an adverse party may not rest upon the mere allegations or denials of his pleading, but his response, by affidavits or as otherwise provided in this rule, must set forth specific facts showing that there is a genuine issue for trial. If he does not so respond, summary judgment, if appropriate, shall be entered against him."
Because a factual predicate for statutory relief under § 1983 has not yet been established below, we think it inappropriate in the present posture of this case to decide the constitutional issue of whether or not proof that a private person knowingly discriminated on the basis of race pursuant to a state trespass statute like the one involved here would make out a violation of the Fourteenth Amendment. Whatever else may also be necessary to show that a person has acted "under color of [a] statute" for purposes of § 1983, see n. 44, infra, we think it essential that he act with the knowledge of and pursuant to that statute. The courts below have made no factual determinations concerning whether or not the Kress refusal to serve Miss Adickes was the result of action by a Kress employee who had knowledge of the trespass statute, and who was acting pursuant to it.
"Indeed, if § 1 had been intended to grant nothing more than an immunity from governmental interference, then much of § 2 would have made no sense at all. For that section, which provided fines and prison terms for certain individuals who deprived others of rights `secured or protected' by § 1, was carefully drafted to exempt private violations of § 1 from the criminal sanctions it imposed. . . . Hence the structure of the 1866 Act, as well as its language, points to the conclusion . . . [that] only those deprivations perpetrated `under color of law' were to be criminally punishable under § 2." Id., 424-426. The Court in Jones cited the legislative history of § 2 to support its conclusion that the section "was carefully drafted to exempt private violations" and punish only "governmental interference." Id., at 424-425 and n. 33.
It should also be noted that the dissenting opinion below thought a "custom or usage" had to have the force of law. 409 F. 2d, at 128.
We intimate no views concerning the relief that might be appropriate if a violation is shown. See Williams v. Hot Shoppes, Inc., 110 U. S. App. D. C. 358, 370-371, 293 F.2d 835, 847-848 (1961) (Bazelon, J., dissenting). The parties have not briefed these remedial issues, and if a violation is proved they are best explored in the first instance below in light of the new record that will be developed on remand. Nor do we mean to determine at this juncture whether there are any defenses available to defendants in § 1983 actions like the one at hand. Cf. Pierson v. Ray, 386 U.S. 547 (1967).
"It is essential to the idea of a law, that it be attended with a sanction; or, in other words, a penalty or punishment for disobedience. If there be no penalty annexed to disobedience, the resolutions or commands which pretend to be laws will, in fact, amount to nothing more than advice or recommendation. This penalty, whatever it may be, can only be inflicted in two ways: by the agency of the courts and ministers of justice, or by military force; by the COERCION of the magistracy, or by the COERCION of arms."
"Whoever, under color of any law, statute, ordinance, regulation, or custom, willfully subjects any inhabitant of any State, Territory, or District to the deprivation of any rights, privileges, or immunities secured or protected by the Constitution or laws of the United States, or to different punishments, pains, or penalties, on account of such inhabitant being an alien, or by reason of his color, or race, than are prescribed for the punishment of citizens, shall be fined not more than $1,000 or imprisoned not more than one year, or both." (Emphasis added.)
Section 1983 of 42 U. S. C. provides a civil remedy. It reads:
"Every person who, under color of any statute, ordinance, regulation, custom, or usage, of any State or Territory, subjects, or causes to be subjected, any citizen of the United States or other person within the jurisdiction thereof to the deprivation of any rights, privileges, or immunities secured by the Constitution and laws, shall be liable to the party injured in an action at law, suit in equity, or other proper proceeding for redress." (Emphasis added.)
"1. Every person, firm or corporation engaged in any public business, trade or profession of any kind whatsoever in the State of Mississippi, including, but not restricted to, hotels, motels, tourist courts, lodging houses, restaurants, dining room or lunch counters, barber shops, beauty parlors, theatres, moving picture shows, or other places of entertainment and amusement, including public parks and swimming pools, stores of any kind wherein merchandise is offered for sale, is hereby authorized and empowered to choose or select the person or persons he or it desires to do business with, and is further authorized and empowered to refuse to sell to, wait upon or serve any person that the owner, manager or employee of such public place of business does not desire to sell to, wait upon or serve . . . .
"2. Any public place of business may, if it so desires, display a sign posted in said place of business serving notice upon the general public that `the management reserves the right to refuse to sell to, wait upon or serve any person,' however, the display of such a sign shall not be a prerequisite to exercising the authority conferred by this act.
"3. Any person who enters a public place of business in this state, or upon the premises thereof, and is requested or ordered to leave therefrom by the owner, manager or any employee thereof, and after having been so requested or ordered to leave, refuses so to do, shall be guilty of a trespass and upon conviction therefor shall be fined not more than five hundred dollars ($500.00) or imprisoned in jail not more than six (6) months, or both such fine and imprisonment. . . ."
(1) Chapter 241 (maximum ten-year penalty for incestuous or interracial marriage);
(2) Chapter 253 [now Miss. Code Ann. §§ 2049-01 to 2049-08] (act "to prohibit the fomenting and agitation of litigation");
(3) Chapter 254 [now Miss. Code Ann. § 4065.3] ("entire executive branch" of state government "to prohibit by any lawful . . . means, the causing of a mixing or integration of the white and Negro races in public schools, public parks, public waiting rooms, public places of amusement, recreation or assembly");
(4) Chapter 255 [now Miss. Code Ann. § 8666] (standards for admitting foreign lawyers to practice in Mississippi);
(5) Chapter 256 [now Miss. Code Ann. § 2090.5] (act "to prohibit any person from creating a disturbance or breach of the peace in any public place of business");
(6) Chapter 258 [now Miss. Code Ann. § 7787.5] (act "to require railroad companies, bus companies and other common carriers of passengers owning, operating or leasing depots, bus stations or terminals to provide separate accommodations [sic] for the races traveling in intrastate travel");
(7) Chapter 259 [now Miss. Code Ann. § 2351.5] (act "to require railroad companies, bus companies or other common carriers for hire maintaining and operating waiting rooms for passengers to provide separate toilet facilities for the races traveling in intrastate travel");
(8) Chapter 260 [now Miss. Code Ann. § 2351.7] (act "to require all persons traveling in intrastate travel to use and occupy the waiting rooms marked and provided for such persons; to prohibit persons traveling in intrastate travel from entering and using the waiting rooms not marked and provided for such persons");
(9) Chapter 261 (act "to prohibit the use of profane, vulgar, indecent, offensive, slanderous language over a telephone");
(10) Chapter 273 (separate schools to be maintained for white and black children) [see Miss. Code Ann. § 6220.5 (unlawful for whites to attend integrated schools)];
(11) Chapter 288 (repeal of compulsory education laws);
(12) Chapter 365 [now Miss. Code Ann. §§ 9028-31 to 9028-48] (creation of state sovereignty commission);
(13) Chapter 466 (Senate Concurrent Resolution No. 125 "condemning and protesting" Brown v. Board of Education).
In addition to the foregoing enactments of 1956, numerous other statutes, in force in 1956 and not thereafter repealed, manifest Mississippi's segregation policies. See, e. g., Miss. Code Ann. § 2339 (punishment for those guilty of "printing, publishing or circulating. . . matter urging or presenting for public acceptance or general information, arguments or suggestions in favor of social equality or of intermarriage between whites and negroes"). Other provisions purport to require segregation in taxicabs (except for servants) (Miss. Code Ann. § 3499); in the State Insane Hospital (Miss. Code Ann. §§ 6882, 6883); and in schools (Miss. Const., Art. 8, § 207).
"Among those customs which we call the common law, that have come down to us from the remote past, are rules which have a special application to those who sustain a quasi public relation to the community. The wayfarer and the traveler had a right to demand food and lodging from the inn-keeper; the common carrier was bound to accept all passengers and goods offered for transportation, according to his means. Soo, [sic] too, all who applied for admission to the public shows and amusements, were entitled to admission, and in each instance, for a refusal, an action on the case lay, unless sufficient reason were shown. The [state civil rights] statute deals with subjects which have always been under legal control."
"That any person who, under color of any law, statute, ordinance, regulation, custom, or usage of any State, shall subject, or cause to be subjected, any person within the jurisdiction of the United States to the deprivation of any rights, privileges, or immunities secured by the Constitution of the United States, shall, any such law, statute, ordinance, regulation, custom, or usage of the State to the contrary notwithstanding, be liable to the party injured in any action at law, suit in equity, or other proper proceeding for redress; such proceeding to be prosecuted in the several district or circuit courts of the United States, with and subject to the same rights of appeal, review upon error, and other remedies provided in like cases in such courts, under the provisions of the act of the ninth of April, eighteen hundred and sixty-six, entitled `An act to protect all persons in the United States in their civil rights, and to furnish the means of their vindication'; and the other remedial laws of the United States which are in their nature applicable in such cases."
Section 1983 presently provides:
"Every person who, under color of any statute, ordinance, regulation, custom, or usage, of any State or Territory, subjects, or causes to be subjected, any citizen of the United States or other person within the jurisdiction thereof to the deprivation of any rights, privileges, or immunities secured by the Constitution and laws, shall be liable to the party injured in an action at law, suit in equity, or other proper proceeding for redress."
The language was changed without comment into its present form when § 1 was codified in 1874 as Revised Statutes § 1979. See id.; 1 Revision of U. S. Statutes, Draft 947 (1872). The jurisdictional provisions of the 1871 Act now appear in 28 U. S. C. § 1343. For purposes of this opinion I assume that the linguistic differences between the original § 1 and present § 1983 are immaterial. See Monroe v. Pape, 365 U.S. 167, 212-213, n. 18 (1961) (opinion of Frankfurter, J.); cf. Jones v. Alfred H. Mayer Co., 392 U.S. 409, 422-423, n. 29 (1968).
"Whoever, under color of any law, statute, ordinance, regulation, or custom, willfully subjects any inhabitant of any State, Territory, or District to the deprivation of any rights, privileges, or immunities secured or protected by the Constitution or laws of the United States . . . ."
This language differs from the comparable language of § 1983, n. 15, supra, in several respects. For example: "law" precedes "statute" in § 242, but not in § 1983; "or usage" follows "custom" in § 1983, but not in § 242; the entire enumeration "statute . . . usage" is qualified by "of any State or Territory" in § 1983, but not in § 242; § 1983 refers to rights that are "secured," whereas § 242 refers to rights "secured or protected"; § 1983 covers rights secured "by the Constitution and laws" (emphasis added), whereas § 242 covers rights secured or protected "by the Constitution or laws of the United States" (emphasis added); § 242 reaches only acts done "willfully," but § 1983 is not so limited. As originally enacted, § 1983 was modeled on the precursor of § 242, with differences of coverage not material here. See Cong. Globe, 42d Cong., 1st Sess., App. 68 (remarks of Rep. Shellabarger). Apart from the inclusion of the word "willfully" in § 242, see Monroe v. Pape, supra, at 187, the linguistic differences mentioned here have not been thought to be substantive. See, e. g., id., at 185; id., at 212-213, n. 18 (opinion of Frankfurter, J.); United States v. Price, supra, at 794 n. 7.
Section 1983 was patterned after § 2 of the Civil Rights Act of 1866, 14 Stat. 27. See Cong. Globe, 42d Cong., 1st Sess., App. 68 (remarks of Rep. Shellabarger). The legislative history of the latter section is no more enlightening on the precise meaning of "under color of any law, statute, ordinance, regulation, or custom" than are the comments on the similar language in § 1983. See Cong. Globe, 39th Cong., 1st Sess., 1680 (veto message of President Johnson); id., at 1120 (remarks of Rep. Loan, a supporter, and Rep. J. Wilson, a manager); id., at 1778 (remarks of Sen. Johnson, an opponent); id., at 1785 (remarks of Sen. Stewart, a supporter); id., at 475, 500, 1758 (remarks of Sen. Trumbull, a manager).
Similar language appeared in § 8 of the Freedmen's Bureau bill, which was also debated at the first session of the 39th Congress. In addition, the word "custom" appeared in § 7 of the bill. See id., at 209. However, the precise language of both sections received virtually no attention during debate. There was, though, some indication that custom was recognized as different from law. See id., at 318 (remarks of Sen. Hendricks, an opponent). See also n. 29, infra.