The Fourteenth Amendment is a Civil War amendment, but it remains relevant today. After enslaved people were freed by the Thirteenth Amendment, the Fourteenth Amendment granted them citizenship and guaranteed equal protection of the laws. This amendment differs from many others as it requires due process and equal protection from the state governments. Today, it is used in a wide range of court cases involving many facets of equality.
The text of this amendment begins, “All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”