42 U.S.C. § 1985(3) was enacted' to curtail the Ku Klux Klan's terrorist activities in the South by prohibiting conspiracies to deprive any person "of the equal protection of the laws, or of equal privileges and immunities under the laws. . . ." From its inception, the major controversy has concerned whether the statute requires an element of state action. The first judicial statement construed the statute as reaching only conspiracies carried out under color of state law. Twenty years later, a unanimous Supreme Court found the statute to "fully encompass the conduct of private persons" attempting to deprive an individual of his right to travel inter- state and his thirteenth amendment rights.
Constitutional Law-Civil Rights-Absent State Involvement, Right of Association Not Protected by 42 USC § 1985(3),
U. Rich. L. Rev.
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