The origin of Shklar’s citizenship?

As said a million times before in our class, Shklar has presented the political science community with an interesting spin on what it means to be a true citizen. By expanding the term from simply a passport or someone who legally lives in the U.S to someone exercising exrecising the their right to vote and earn money, she has opened the doors to new views on what beaing a true citizen in the U.S entails. So after hearing on and on about her perspectives on citizenship it made me wonder where her ideas could have spawned from or if someone else in the past has used some of the same ideology. After some long,intensive, and back breaking work I have found case that uses comparable ideas to Shklar.As said a million times before in our class, Shklar has presented the political science community with an interesting spin on what it means to be a true citizen. By expanding the term from simply a passport or someone who legally lives in the U.S to someone exercising exrecising the their right to vote and earn money, she has opened the doors to new views on what beaing a true citizen in the U.S entails. So after hearing on and on about her perspectives on citizenship it made me wonder where her ideas could have spawned from or if someone else in the past has used some of the same ideology. After some long,intensive, and back breaking work I have found case that uses comparable ideas to Shklar.

The Slaugherhouse Cases of 1873 are  viewed as a pivotal case in early civil rights law, reading the Fourteenth Amendment as protecting the “privileges or immunities” conferred by virtue of the federal United States citizenship to all individuals of all states within it, but not those privileges or immunities incident to citizenship of a state. They mainly dealt with butchers and their ability to earn. The butchers in New Orleans at the time were butchering around 300,000 animals a year, but they were infecting people’s drinking water the animals entrail, blood, and dung, causing people to get sick with cholera. The city had 11 outbreaks of cholera in from 1832-1869. In response the city of New Orleans called state legislature to centralize the butchers business in near New Orleans to reduce the disorganized butchering and dumping. The Crescent City Live Stock Landing Co. was to turn the new Orleans butcher shops into one “grand slaughterhouse” to help eradicate the problem. The butchers all knew this would inevitable hurt their individual business. Over four hundred members of the Butchers’ Benevolent Association joined together to sue to stop Crescent City’s takeover of the slaughterhouse industry. Their claim was :”This statute is denounced [by the butchers] not only as creating a monopoly and conferring odious and exclusive privileges upon a small number of persons at the expense of the great body of the community of New Orleans, but it is asserted that it deprives a large and meritorious class of citizens — the whole of the butchers of the city — of the right to exercise their trade, the business to which they have been trained and on which they depend for the support of themselves and their families, and that the unrestricted exercise of the business of butchering is necessary to the daily subsistence of the population of the city.”

So they basically felt that the state violated their right to earn money by shutting off their business’. That is pretty comparable to Shklar’s claim that people arent citizens without the ability to earn, so that was what the Butchers were using to justify their claims. They felt that is citizens of America, the state couldn’t monopolize the butcher business because it violets their rights as citizens. The butchers lost the case but in the long run it was appealed 11 years later.

Ooops on the pic above,  here is a better one….

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One Response to The origin of Shklar’s citizenship?

  1. This is a very interesting example of a legal case where the government was trying to snatch citizenship, in Shklar’s view, from a group of legal citizens of the United States. Although safety of the public should always be considered the top priority of the government, it may not have made the best decision to attempt to eliminate cholera outbreaks since it resulted in severely damaging the butchers’ businesses. Hopefully this was resolved in a manner that ended the cholera outbreaks and made meat safer while at the same time not causing significant damage to the businesses of the butchers.

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