Chapter Four Civil Liberties. Instructor: Kevin Sexton Course: U.S. Political Systems Southeast Missouri State University. Civil Liberties versus Civil Rights. Civil Liberties deal with the Bill of Rights. & Civil Rights deal with laws passed by national and state legislatures. AND…….
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Instructor: Kevin Sexton
Course: U.S. Political Systems
Southeast Missouri State University
Civil Liberties deal with the Bill of Rights.
Civil Rights deal with laws passed by national and state legislatures.
CIVIL LIBERTIES are protections from government
CIVIL RIGHTS are protections by government
Who Is or Who Was The Government?
The WHO has changed.
Prior to the Civil War the level of government to which
the Bill of Rights applied was the federal government.
The U.S. Constitution is the rules by which the federal government operate, the Bill of Rights is the first
ten amendments to the U.S. Constitution.
What did the Civil War change?
Three CIVIL RIGHTS amendments
ratified after the Civil War:
13th Amendment – Abolished Slavery
14th Amendment – Redefined Civil Rights & Liberties
15th Amendment -- Provided The Vote To All Male Citizens
14th Amendment changes the fact that the Bill of Rights only
applied to the federal government.
Both the 5th and 14th Amendment addresses “due process.”
5th Amendment – “... nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property
without due process of law; …”
14th Amendment – “… nor shall any State deprive any person
of life, liberty, or property with the due
process of law;…”
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE?
“… nor shall any “STATE” deprive…”
The 14th Amendment now applies the Bill of Rights to both
the federal and state governments.
But the federal government was not in a position to do this.
The federal government (Supreme Court) implemented a
process known as
The case by case application of each right found
within the Bill of Rights.
Most, but not all of the Bill of Rights is applied
to the States.
(i.e. 2nd Amendment)
1st – Speech, Press, Assembly and Religion **
2nd – Bear Arms
3rd – Quartering of Troops
4th-8th – Rights of Criminally Accused **
9th – Necessary and Proper
10th – Reserved Powers
Freedom of Speech
Five Doctrines or Tests that have been used to measure the
appropriateness of limits placed on speech.
Bad Tendency Test
Clear & Present Danger
Fighting Words Doctrine
Many people are unsure if obscene material is or should be illegal.
The Supreme Court is very clear about this….
Obscene Material is illegal and can be restricted.
The question is not IS obscene material illegal.
The questions is WHAT is obscene and
WHO determines what is obscene
In Miller v California (1973) the Supreme Court stated that LOCAL COMMUNTIY STANDARDS will determine what is considered obscene.
Are there any questions about what
LOCAL COMMUNITY STANDARDS are?
How Do We Deal With Internet Pornography and
Local Community Standards?
Libel deals with the written word.
Slander deals with the spoken word.
Two clauses in the 1st Amendment address religion.
Establishment Clause: government will not create a “state religion”
Free Exercise Clause: we can practice ANY religion we choose
without government interference.
Separation of church and state
Where in the Constitution is this doctrine found?
NO WHERE. IT IS NOT FOUND IN ANY HISTORICAL U.S. DOCUMENT.
Where does it come from?
Thomas Jefferson’s Letter to the Danbury Baptist Association
(a copy of this letter is found on the course website)
Does this doctrine mean that the government cannot be
involved or supportive of any religious organization?
Governments can provide support to religious schools and organizations as long as there is no excessive entanglements
as a result of the involvement.
Lemon v Kurtzman (1971)
Any state law providing assistance to religious schools must
meet the following standards:
i.e. YES to textbooks, but NO to teacher salaries
The vast majority of the Bill of Rights deals with the rights of
the criminally accused.
The anti-federalist feared that the central government would be able
to squash opposition by imprisoning them, as the British did prior to
To prevent that from happening they created a number of guarantees
To protect those that might be wrongly accused of a crime.
Amendments 4 thru 8 deal with the rights of the criminally accused.
For the in-class portion of exam one you will need to be
Familiar with the court cases presented in this power point
As well as those listed in the table found on page 451 of your
Be familiar with the basic rights of the criminally accused
And in which amendment they are covered.