Interview with Constance Baker Motley
QUESTION 14
INTERVIEWER:

DID YOU ANTICIPATE THIS DOCTRINE OF INTERPOSITION COULD YOU TELL US WHAT THAT IS AND…

Judge Constance Baker Motley:

Well, of course the south had many strategies which it invoked after the Brown case to prevent its implementation. One came out of the dark past called "interposition and nullification": words which the American people had not heard in this century at least. And what it was in effect, was the statement that the south intended to resist as they had during the period of the civil war any national or federal imposition of a, policies of integration on them. And of course they pursued that policy in many states. In Mississippi for example, when James Meredith was finally admitted by court action to the University of Mississippi, the governor called for every official in the state to resist the implementation of that decision. Now that was outright rebellion against the United States, and as you know, that decision of the Supreme Court that he should be admitted had to be enforced by the use of federal troops. Prior to that, the Supreme Court's decision in Brown itself had to be implemented in Arkansas with the use of federal troops. So the south did resist in many ways the implementation of the Brown decision.