Major Department

Ethics and Public Policy


College of Liberal Arts & Sciences


BA (Bachelor of Arts)

Session and Year of Graduation

Fall 2020

Honors Major Advisor

Kelley, Colleen K

Thesis Mentor

Tolbert, Caroline J


The United States still has a problem with institutional discrimination against racial and ethnic groups outside of non-Hispanic whites. Similar to how political scientists and historians have enlightened readers about how historic Jim Crow laws still contribute to systemic racism against Black Americans today, this study outlines how “Juan Crow” laws against have contributed to a history of discrimination against Latino/a Americans in many aspects of public life. First, this paper examines the history of how Latinos/as are classified and how such classifications have aided both government-permitted and government-sponsored legal discrimination, prejudice, and even violence against Latinos prior to the 1960s. Next, there is a description of how the old Juan Crow has evolved into the inequality that contemporary Latinos/as face in the areas of housing and wealth, education, and criminal justice outcomes. Finally, two proposals, one for promoting positive educational narratives and Hispanic-Serving Institutions and one for promoting better representation in all levels of government, are offered as having the potential to begin helping dismantle the current system of institutional discrimination against Latino/a Americans.


Hispanic/Latino, Racism, Discrimination, Jim Crow, Racial Discrimination, Inequality

Total Pages

23 pages


Copyright © 2020 Mary Grace A. Mahoney