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Constitution Day Commemoration speakers discussed Civil Rights

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The History and Philosophy Department sponsored a panel discussion of Civil Rights and the 14th Amendment in honor of Constitution Day at the Hammond and Westville campus on Sept. 18.

Associate professor of history, Kenneth Kincaid talked about Latino immigration and the impact of the amendment. Associate professor of history, Wendy St. Jean discussed the Chinese immigration in the late 19th and early 20th centuries and the highly restrictive legislation preventing immigrants from China and regulating their lives and efforts to make a living in the United States. James Pula, professor of history, talked about the history of the 14th Amendment. Lastly, Frank Colucci, associate professor of political science, talked about a couple of court cases relating to the 14th Amendment and same-sex marriage.

Colucci urges students to be reflective and critical of the Constitution.

“The opening—Preamble—requires We the People always to reconsider whether the form of government is actually achieving or approaching the goals it set out,” Colucci said.

Mary Beth Connolly, continuing lecturer of History and concurrent enrollment liaison for History & Political Science, said celebrating Constitution Day is important to do as a public institution.

“We as the history faculty of both the former Purdue North Central and Purdue Calumet had taken this responsibility upon our respective departments and we carried that into our unified History and Philosophy department,” Connolly said.

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