High court rules for Conn. white firefighters

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Writing in dissent, Justice Ginsburg said the court’s decision Monday ignores New Haven’s valid interest in having diverse leadership in their fire department.

“By order of this court, New Haven, a city in which African-Americans and Hispanics account for nearly 60 percent of the population, must today be served — as it was in the days of undisguised discrimination — by a fire department in which members of racial and ethnic minorities are rarely seen in command positions,” she wrote.

She predicted the court’s opinion “will not have staying power.”

Writing a concurring opinion with the majority, Justice Scalia said the court has still put off an eventual reckoning over discrimination law. He said Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, which allows for disparate treatment if it serves to remedy discrimination, will eventually have to be squared “with the Constitution’s guarantee of equal protection.”

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