45 landmark Supreme Court cases that changed American life as we knew it
- The US Supreme Court was formed in 1789. It's gone from five seats to 10, and is now fixed at nine.
- It makes fewer than 100 decisions every year, but its choices have had a huge impact on the country.
- Some decisions have empowered women, helped protect the environment, or guaranteed a person's right to expression. Others have strengthened racist laws, enabled forced sterilization, and allowed unequal schooling.
- Here is a guide to 45 of the Supreme Court's most impactful decisions.
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The US Supreme Court, the court of last resort, has undeniably changed the country.
It makes fewer than 100 decisions every year that have sweeping effects on American life.
Some have changed race relations for the better, empowered women, given the press freedom to operate, guaranteed a person's right to expression, or reiterated that the president is not above the law.
Not every decision has aged well. Other decisions have enforced slavery or create uneven schooling in the US.
Here are 45 of the most important cases the Supreme Court has ever decided.