From Public Accommodations Bill to Civil Rights Act of 1964
"Title II of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits discrimination because of race, color, religion, or national origin in certain places of public accommodations, such as hotels, restaurants, and places of entertainment."
Many confuse the public accommodations bill with the Civil Right Act of 1964. Therefore, it is important to note the differences among the two. The public accommodations bill was actually a section in what would eventually become the Civil Rights Act. However, at the time of Mayor Allen’s testimony, it was still known as the public accommodations bill and outlined several obligations of Congress to foster social integration and end discrimination within the United States. Certain points of the public accommodations bill are then added to a revised version which later becomes known as the Fair Housing Act or Civil Rights Act of 1968. This act is actually passed by President Lyndon B. Johnson after the assassination of President Kennedy.
Mayor Allen's Support After the Civil Rights Act of 1964
After the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the struggle for equality persisted despite new legislation enacted. With President Johnson in office after the death of President John F. Kennedy, Americans experienced turmoil at home with regard to ongoing disputes of race relations and abroad with the spread of Communism and the unpopular Vietnam War. Despite the pressures of the United States' numerous instances of foreign intervention during his tenure, President Johnson continues JFK's support of racial equality by prioritizing civil rights. In 1967, he drafts a statement to Congress in which he articulates the existing inequality within the nation and proposes a new Civil Rights bill. The Ivan Allen Digital Archive provides a draft of President Johnson's statement as demonstrated from the image to the left and link below which allows users to access the full version of his statement.
After President Johnson's statement to Congress in favor of further legislation, Mayor Allen expresses his support for Johnson's argument to pass a new bill. He describes his agreement with Johnson's claims regarding a follow-up bill and pledges his support in the memo to the right.