The Two Sides • Federalists • Antifederalists
Federalist • Your rights are protected by the Constitution, there is no need for a Bill of Rights
Anti- Federalists • Rights need to be defined so they can not be taken away
Compromise • Anti-Federalist agree to ratify as long as the Federalist promise to include a Bill of Rights • Why- The government needs to start running, the nation will soon collapse
First Amendment • The First Amendment sets out five basic liberties: • The guarantee of freedom of religion is both a protection of religious thought and practice and a command of separation of church and state. (Remember "Prayer in School" issue?) • The guarantees of freedom of speech and press assure to all persons a right to speak, publish, and otherwise express their views. • The guarantees of the rights of assembly and petition protect the right to join with others in public meetings, political parties, pressure groups, and other associations to discuss public affairs and influence public policy. • None of these rights is guaranteed in absolute terms, however; like all other civil rights guarantees, each of them may be exercised only with regard to the rights of all other persons. Meaning you can't infringe upon other people's rights.
Why was it passed? • The First Amendment was created because the Founding Fathers (FF) wanted to guarantee that Americans' basic civil liberties would not be threatened by the government. • Many of the colonists first migrated to the Americas because they wanted greater religious freedoms. Consequently, the FF wanted to ensure that religious freedom would be protected. The First Amendment was also created to ensure the separation of church and state. Even though religion was an important part of the FF's lives, they wanted to guarantee that the state didn't try to force religion on the people. • Leading up to the Revolution, colonists were angered that the King of England and Parliament ignored many of their protests or petitions and tried to stifle opposition to their rule. The colonists petitioned for change in regards to taxes and other laws. Consequently, the FF created the first amendment to guarantee that individuals had the right to protest and petition when things aren't going as they like.
2nd Amendment • Each state has the right to maintain a militia, a volunteer armed force for its own protection; however, both the National Government and the States can and do regulate the possession and use of firearms by private persons.
Why was it passed • The Founding Fathers created the Second Amendment to protect individual rights to own a gun and limit the government's power. • Directly preceding the first shots fired at Concord, Massachusetts, British soldiers had been sent to the area to disarm the colonists. • Also, the English Bill of Rights was a document that provided many rights for British citizens, including "the right to bear arms." Even though this document only gave this right to British citizens, colonists felt that this right should be given to them as well.
3rd Amendment • This amendment guarantees that the government can not force people to house, feed, cloth, or take care of soldiers during times of peace. This amendment was intended to prevent what had been common British practice in the colonial period; see some of the causes of the American Revolution particularly events leading up to the Boston Massacre. This provision is of virtually no importance today.
Why was it passed? • One of the key grievances of the colonists was when Parliament and the King would force the colonists to quarter British troops. To quarter troops means that residents had to allow British troops in to their homes and provide them with food and shelter. • Because of their distaste for these acts the Founding Fathers created the Third Amendment, protecting people from future attempts by the government to make them quarter troops.
4th Amendment • The basic rule laid down by the 4th Amendment is this: Police officers have no general right to search for or seize evidence or seize (arrest) persons. Except in particular circumstances, they must have proper warrant (a court order) obtained with probable cause (on reasonable grounds). This guarantee is reinforced by the exclusionary rule, developed by the Supreme Court: Evidence gained as a result of an unlawful search for seizure cannot be used at the court trial of the person from whom it was seized.
Why was it passed? • The Founding Fathers wanted to protect the rights of individuals and prevent the government from abusing its powers. • In the colonies British officials had the power to enter and search residential homes whenever they wanted due to the "writs of assistance." In 1761 a young lawyer named James Otis spoke out against these searches: "One of the most essential branches of English liberty is the freedom of one's house. A man's house is his castle; and whilst he is quiet, he is as well guarded as a prince in his castle." • Hence, the Fourth Amendment was written to protect against arbitrary police power.
5th Amendment • A person can be tried for a serious federal crime only if he or she has been indicted (charged, accused of that crime) by a grand jury. No one may be subjected to double jeopardy - that is, tried twice for the same crime. All persons are protected against self-incrimination; no person can be legally compelled to answer any question in any governmental proceeding if that answer could lead to that person's prosecution. The 5th Amendment's Due Process Clause prohibits unfair, arbitrary actions by the Federal Government; a like prohibition is set out against the States in the 14th Amendment. Government may take private property for a legitimate public purpose; but when it exercises that power of eminent domain, it must pay a fair price for the property seized.
Why was it created? • The Fifth Amendment was created because the Founding Fathers wanted to protect basic rights of the accused. They objected to many of the ways they were treated by the British in matters of crime and justice. Hence, the Fifth Amendment provides for many protections from unfair methods of prosecution and investigation.
6th Amendment • A person accused of crime has the right to be tried in court without undue delay and by an impartial jury. The defendant must be informed of the charge upon which he or she is to be tried, has the right to cross-examine hostile witnesses, and has the right to require the testimony of favorable witnesses. The defendant also has the right to be represented by an attorney at every stage in the criminal process
Why was it passed? • The Sixth Amendment was created because the Founding Fathers wanted to protect basic rights of the accused. They objected to many of the ways they were treated by the British in matters of crime and justice. Hence, the Sixth Amendment provides for many protections from unfair methods of prosecution and investigation. Some of these rights were originally given to English citizens and the Founding Fathers were influenced by their knowledge of those rights to the degree that they wanted those rights protected for Americans as well.
7th Amendment • This amendment applies only to civil cases heard in federal courts. A civil case does not involve criminal matters; it is a dispute between private parties or between the government and a private party. The right to trial by jury is guaranteed in any civil case in a federal court if the amount of money involved in that case exceeds $20 (most cases today involve a much larger sum); that right may be waived (relinquished, put aside) if both parties agree to a bench trial (a trial by a judge, without a jury).
Why was it passed? • The Seventh Amendment was created because the Founding Fathers wanted to provide the opportunity of a jury trial in civil cases involving large sums of money. Jury trials are guaranteed in criminal cases and they wanted that right available in big cases.
8th Amendment • Bail is the sum of money that a person accused of crime may be required to post (deposit with the court) as a guarantee that he or she will appear in court at the proper time. The amount of bail required and/or a fine imposed as punishment must bear a reasonable relationship to the seriousness of the crime involved in the case. The prohibition of cruel and unusual punishment forbids any punishment judged to be too harsh, too severe for the crime for which it was imposed
Why was it created? • The Founding Fathers created the Eighth Amendment to protect against the unfair treatment of individuals accused or convicted of a crime. Some of the treatments that the British served upon the colonists enraged them and they wanted to ensure that future abuses of power by the government in areas of justice would not occur.
9th Amendment • The fact that the Constitution sets out many civil rights guarantees, expressly provides for many protections against government, does not mean that there are not other rights also held by the people.
Why was it passed? • The Founding Fathers had the foresight to recognize that the Constitution could not explicitly include every right that should be guaranteed by citizens, hence they created the Ninth Amendment to serve as a “catch all” amendment to guarantee rights that should be protected according to the Supreme Court. The Ninth Amendment makes the Constitution a “living” or “working” document that is flexible for the needs of the present and future because it can be interpreted. This way, just because a right isn’t specifically named in the Constitution it can still be protected without waiting for a new ratification of the Constitution. For example, the Constitution does not specifically state the rights to privacy and abortion but these rights are guaranteed by the Ninth Amendment according to the interpretations made by the Supreme Court.
10th Amendment • This amendment identifies the area of power that may be exercised by the States. All of those powers the Constitution does not grant to the National Government, and at the same time does not forbid to the States, belong to each of the States, or to the people of each State.
Why was it created? • To guarantee that the states would have all powers that were not given to the Federal government. The states were fearful that the Federal government would become to strong.