What is an amendment? Amendment = Change or addition to the Constitution Article V – gives the methods for amending the Constitution 27 – there have been 27 amendments added to the Constitution 1791 = the first ten amendments were added
Bill of Rights Bill of Rights = our 1 st ten amendments Added to appease the Anti-Federalist States certain basic rights that cannot be taken away without Due Process Two types of rights: Civil Liberties = Rights that protect you FROM the government – what they cannot take away Civil Rights = Rights given to you BY the government – protect you from discrimination.
What led us to the idea of “Rights” In 1215 Britain’s Parliament forced the King John to sign the Magna Carta Magna Carta 1215 – 1 st time the king’s powers were limited. Prevented abuse of his powers (arbitrary acts) and gave the people certain rights like – being informed of why they were being punished. The King was no longer free to do EVERYTHING he pleased, but it didn’t really limit the monarch too much.
What led us to the idea of “Rights” In 1628 King Charles asked the British Parliament for more money Since Parliament was the body that had the power to tax, they could increase taxes for the King. Parliament refused to increase taxes unless the King agreed to sign The Petition of Rights Petition of Rights 1628 – Guaranteed citizens such rights as a trial by jury, due process, etc This is where we get some of our ideas of Due Process
What led us to the idea of “Rights” In 1688 the Glorious Revolution occurred in British = the was the PEACEFUL overthrow of King James 1689 Parliament offered the Throne to William and Mary of Orange. Parliament said they could only have the position if they agreed to sign the English Bill of Rights Established Parliamentary Democracy – Monarch no longer absolute English Bill of Rights 1689 – established more protections of citizens rights –right to bear arms for protection, right to free speech, no royal taxation, no cruel and unusual punishment.
1 st Amendment Includes FIVE different freedoms/rights (RSPAP) A. Freedom of Religion – Gov’t cannot discriminate or punish based on religious beliefs. Separation b/t Church & State B. Freedom of Speech – can be limited to protect General Welfare. Includes Expression as a form of speech. Like burning the flag peacefully is ok C. Freedom of Press – regulated closely to protect others D. Right to Assembly – peaceful & in compliance with laws E. Right to Petition the Gov’t – speak out w/o fear of being punished.
2 nd Amendment Right to keep and bear arms Follow gun laws – no felonies, minors, etc Initially intended for defense, not to use as weapons
3 rd Amendment Prohibits the quartering of troops in time of peace and time of war Sounds silly now, but think about during The American Revolution when people were forced to house troops.
4 th Amendment Prohibits illegal searches & seizures of personal property In order to search they must have the following: 1. Permission 2. Warrant 3. Probable Cause In order to seize the property 1. Permission 2. Warrant
5 th Amendment BY FAR one of the most important elements to remember! Star, highlight, circle, etc the first part (this amendment has 4 elements) A. DUE PROCESS – gov’t CANNOT deny ANYONE Due Process (steps taken) of Law. You cannot be punished or lose any rights w/o 1 st going through Due Process B. Prevents Double Jeopardy- cannot be tried for same crime twice C. Eminent Domain- gov’t can seize property D. Prohibits Self –incrimination = do not have to testify in own defense “I plead the 5 th ”
Criminal v. Civil In your notes copy these two things down to better understand the 6 th and 7 th amendments There are TWO types of cases 1. Criminal Case = involving an actual crime – rape, murder, assault, weapons, kidnapping, etc 2. Civil Case = involving a NON –criminal matter – divorce, broken contracts, liability suits, trespassing, etc.
6 th Amendment Guarantees you the right to a trial by jury in all federal criminal cases (14 th later required state cases).
7 th Amendment Guarantees you the right to a fair trial in federal civil cases exceeding ($20 then) $1500. Below $1500 a judge settles it
8 th Amendment Prohibits Cruel & Unusual punishment Also prohibits excessive bail Very controversial, b/c many consider death penalty cruel. Keep in mind though, that when the amendment was passed each state had the death penalty
9 th Amendment People’s Rights Amendment Said that the People are not limited to JUST these rights listed, there are more rights. One delegate said “shall we list that we have the right to sleep, breath, eat?” They all laughed and said one clear amendment could clarify we have other rights.
10 th Amendment State’s Rights Amendment Gave each state “Reserved Powers” Reserved Powers = any powers not used by the National gov’t & not prohibited by The Constitution, belongs to the States.