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Why looks are the last bastion of discrimination
Originally published on May 23, 2010 in the Washington Post by Deborah L. Rhode (Clayman Institute Director, 1986-1990). In the 19th century, many American cities banned public appearances by "unsightly" individuals. A Chicago ordinance was typical: "Any person who is diseased, maimed, mutilated, or in any way deformed, so as to be an unsightly or disgusting subject . . . shall not . . . expose himself to public view, under the penalty of a fine of $1 for each offense."