The Bill of Rights. Why was the Bill of Rights necessary? People in the USA didn’t want to live under a government with total power like they had under England. EX. People didn’t want the government to have the ability to: search their homes without permission
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Why was the Bill of Rights necessary?
People in the USA didn’t want to live under a government with total power like they had under England.
EX. People didn’t want the government to have the ability to:
search their homes without permission
force the citizens to open their homes to soldiers
not allow the people to have public meetings
Many people in the USA wanted strong statements added to the Constitution that protected people’s most basic rights.
Congress added 10 amendments (12 were proposed but only 10 were approved) to the Constitution. These were known as the Bill of Rights.
A.K.A. The Bill of Rights
freedom of religion
freedom of speech
freedom of the press
hold peaceful meetings regarding laws (right to assemble)
EX. Martin Luther King, Jr. could hold peaceful meetings for African Americans about their rights as USA citizens.
Ask the government to correct something that they think is wrong (right of petition)
EX. Give African Americans & women the right to vote
These freedoms are all limited in one way; a person cannot use these laws to take away the rights of another person.Amendment 1: Freedom of Opinion
MILITIA – army of citizens, not paid soldiers
All people have the right to own weapons (arms)Amendment 2:Right to Bear Arms
In wartime, the government can put soldiers in the homes of people as long as special laws are made explaining how this will be done.Amendment 3:Housing of Soldiers
WARRANT = a document that says the police have the right to look through a person’s belongings; it must say exactly what the police are looking for and where they are going to look for itAmendment 4:Searches & Seizures
FELONY = breaking a law that takes the rights away from another person (ex., murder, rape, theft)
A person who has been indicted has these rights:
Doesn’t have to testify against himself
Cannot be tried again for the same crime if found not guilty
The police & court have to follow a fair legal process (due process)
The government cannot take away a person’s property for public use unless the person is paid a fair price for itAmendment 5:Rights in Criminal Cases(Due Process)
Fair, public trial as soon as possible
Know what she/he is accused of so she/he can prepare a defense
Can be present when witnesses are testifying against him
Can call witnesses to defend him, even if they don’t want to (SUBPOENA)
Right to have a lawyerAmendment 6:Rights to a Fair Trial
Lawsuits that deal with disagreements between people
EX. Over land, property, money, wages
A civil case being dealt with in a federal court can be tried by judge or jury, the people in the case have to make the choice.
A jury’s decision can be checked by a higher court
The jury’s decision can only be changed by the higher court if the jury misinterpreted or misunderstood the law, or if they did not hear all of the facts in the case.Amendment 7:Rights in Civil Cases
BAIL = money paid to the court promising that the accused person will show up to the trial
The government cannot use cruel and unusual punishments (i.e. torture)Amendment 8:Bail, Fines, & Punishments
This political cartoon shows Lady Justice blindly
beating an African American man with the justice
system. The artist shows how Rodney
King’s 8th Amendment rights were violated by
the police & then by the courts. The court found
the police who beat him during his arrest not
(There were too many rights to list in it!)Amendment 9:Rights Not Mentioned
The government only has the powers listed in the Constitution and no more!Amendment 10:Powers Not Delegated