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Political Science Civil Liberties!

by: Olivia Brooksbank

Political Science Civil Liberties! PSCI 1040

Marketplace > University of North Texas > History > PSCI 1040 > Political Science Civil Liberties
Olivia Brooksbank

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About this Document

These notes cover civil liberties from the book and from class! Come take a look if you wish to be successful!
American History
Wendy Watson
Class Notes
political science, history, Politics, Government
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This 5 page Class Notes was uploaded by Olivia Brooksbank on Friday April 15, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to PSCI 1040 at University of North Texas taught by Wendy Watson in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 67 views. For similar materials see American History in History at University of North Texas.


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Date Created: 04/15/16
Notes Civil Liberties Class 4/12/16 What are Civil Liberties? Fundamental rights that are (mostly) outside the authority of government to regulate Found primarily in: - The bill of rights (Primary source) - Article 1 prohibitions of suspension of have as corpus (show the body, petition the courts and demand why the government justify certain things), bills of attainer, and ex post facto laws Barron v. Baltimore (1833) Does the 5th amendment deny the states the right to take private property for public use without justly compensating the properties owner?….NO Why? - The supreme court rules that the Bill of Rights applied only to the national government The fourteenthAmendment (1968) - Nor shall any STATE deprive any person of life, LIBERTY… Gitlow v. New York (1925) Does the first amendment apply to the states? Yes. By virtue of the liberty protected by the fourteenth amendment The Supreme Court begins the process of INCORPORATION Incorporation - The process of applying provisions of the bill of Rights to the states - Total incorporation: elected provisions of the U.S. Bill of Rights have been applied to the states through the equal protection clause of the Fourteenth (14th)Amendment. - Selective incorporation: The supreme court rejects total incorporation and adopts approach of selective incorporation Compelling Interest Test - Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances. - Congress CAN make law if there is a compelling interest The government can limit the exercise of a fundamental right if: 1. The government has a compelling government interest in passing the law 2. The law is narrowly tailored to meet that interest Free Expression: (Know what the government is doing) - Speech (Express yourself) - Press (media to be free) - Association (your right to be with the people you want to be with) Freedom of speech: Protections - Pure speech (Talking, speaking) - Symbolic speech (Don’t say anything, there is expressive action) Limits - Advocacy of unlawful activities - fighting words (Say something that gets someone to break the law immediately) - Time, place, and manner restrictions (Example: tv after 10 for adults) Notes Civil Liberties Class 4/12/16 Freedom of Press Prior Restraint - Court requires a compelling proof of hard to be caused by publication in order to allow censorship before publication Subsequent Punishment - Libel (destroying reputation based off of lies ) - Obscenity Obscenity: The Miller Test To determine whether material is obscene, must ask: 1. Whether ‘the average person applying contemporary community standards’would find that the work, taken as a whole, appeals to the prurient interest (base) 2. What the work depicts or describes, in a patently offensive way, sexual conduct specifically defined by the applicable state law. 3. Whether the work, taken as a whole, lacks serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value. Freedom ofAssociation - Subject only to time, place and manner restrictions Congress shall make no law respecting the establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof Free exercise of Religion: – Neutral laws of general applicability do not implicate the Free Exercise Clause – Their can be no law about religion! – Sherbert Test • Sincere religious belief? • Substantial burden? • Compelling government interest? • Least restrictive means? Establishment of religion (The lemon Test, Lemon vs. Kurtzman): – Laws cannot advance or inhibit religion. – Laws must have secular purpose – Laws cannot foster excessive government entanglement. (Are we endorsing religion over atheism) – No endorsement. – No coercion.Polygamy? • Compulsory school attendance laws? • Prayer in schools? • Prayer in government meetings? • Animal sacrifice as part of religious ceremony? • Use of peyote as part of religious ceremony? • School vouchers use at religiously-affiliated schools?\ Notes Civil Liberties Class 4/12/16 Prayer In schools? - No - You can have religious groups that meet at school - Problematic in the classroom is bad because you are indoctrinating children - Prayer in government meetings? > it is okay for legislator to begin its session with a prayer, they are typically non denominational Blackstone’s Formulation “Better that ten guilty persons escape, than that one innocent suffer” 3 Stages of the rights of the Criminally accused 1. Investigated (Criminal investigations) 2. Trial Procedures: Guilty or not 3. If you are guilty, Verdict and Punishment Criminal investigations: - Miranda Requirements - Protection against unreasonable searches and seizures: in order to search your home or belongings the police MUST obtain a warrant. > Warrant requirement > The Exclusionary Rule - Protection against self incrimination Notes Civil Liberties book 4/7/16 Central Ideas: - Civil liberties protect Individuals from abused of power by the government - The Bill of Rights defines the core of civil liberties protections and Supreme Court interpretations define the limits of these protections - Civil liberties protections have sometimes been extended to apply to state governments as well - The interpretation of individual liberties has changed over time Civil Liberty - Rights that we all have - Rights that we are born with as individuals that the government can’t take away - They are written in the first 10 amendments of the constitution (Bill of Rights) 1. Freedom of religion, speech, Press, assembly, and religion 2. Right to bear arms 3. No quartering of troops 4. No unreasonable searches and seizures, required warrant 5. No Double jeopardy or self-incrimination Rights of due process and grand jury screening 6. Right to speedy and public trial, Impartial Jury 7. Right to a jury trial in civil cases 8. No cruel and unusual punishment 9. Rights not enumerated in the constitution 10. States’rights With liberty and justice for all - Habeas Corpus: Protection against illegal imprisonment requiring that those detained have access to a court of law concerning the reasons for their detention - The case Bournediene v. Bush struck down the Military Commissions act of 2006 as constitutional because the act denied habeas corpus Civil liberties protect individuals from abuses of power by the government - Civil Liberties are the restraints on government fount in the Bill of Rights and Civil Rights protect citizens from discrimination by the government or other citizens. - Bill of rights communicates what the government cannot do - First amendment covers the freedom of expression: Religion, speech, press, assembly and petition The first amendment and the freedom of religion 1. The establishment clause: Prevents the national government from establishing a national religion 2. Free Exercise clause: Protects individuals from the national government restrictions on religious practices - Secular: non-religious Important cases: Lemon v. Kurtzman: One of the most important cases concerning religious establishment. The case posed the question of whether state financial support of the teaching of secular subjects in religious schools violates the first amendments’establishment clause The court used this opportunity to establish a standard to guide judicial decision making, weighing constitutionality of government action involving religion GOVERNMENTACTION MAY NOT RESULT IN EXCESSIVE GOVERNMENT ENTANGLEMENT IN RELIGION Sherbert v. Verner: Cannot be discriminated against in the workplace for their religious beliefs Court used this opportunity to establish this standard Notes Civil Liberties book 4/7/16 Limitations on freedom of speech: - Defamation: Speech, spoken or written that is untruthful and can be proved to have malicious intent that may be harmful to the subject - Libel: Defamation in written form - Slander: Defamation in spoken form Material can be banned if the average person would find that 1. It appeals to prurient interest (those associated with sexual desire) 2. It is patently offensive 3. The work as a whole lacks serious literary, artistic, political or scientific value Civil liberties protections extend to apply to state governments too - The idea of dual citizenship refers to theAmericans being subject to both state and national protections - The 14th amendment: Revised dual citizenship, indicating that the bill of rights applied to each of the states and that all of its protections were to be enjoyed by all citizens regardless of the state in which they lived. -he right to Privacy andAbortion Roe v. Wade The right to privacy and Sexuality - Bowers v. Hardwick found that states could restrict sexual activity unrelated to procreation - Lawrence v. Texas extended the right to privacy to sexual conduct between consenting homosexual adults. The right to Die: - Popular initiative:Ameans for gaining access to the ballot through signed petitions to present voters with a proposed statute, constitutional amendment, or ordinance, frequently called a citizens initiative. The FourthAmendment provides protection of your reasonable expectations of privacy - 4th amendment: The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated” - Katz v. United States: Charles Katz used a public pay phone to convey information about a bookmaking operation, the calls were made from one state to another and the FBI was involved by placing a listening device on the phone booth without a warrant. Katz argued that his calls were recorded in violation of the 4th amendment. - The 5thAmendment: The right to remain silent, provides many protections for citizens, both those who are criminal suspects and those who are not. - While the original purpose of the privilege against self incrimination was allow criminal defendants to remain silent during their actual trial, now the concern is primarily with the possibility of coercing a confession HOWEVER confessions undermine the legitimacy of the courts and are sometimes false.


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