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L20 Civili Liberties, Civil Rights

L20 Civili Liberties, Civil Rights - Civil Liberties Civil...

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Civil Liberties, Civil Rights Lecture 20 March 24, 2008 Pol 1101
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Distinction between Rights and Liberties Rights describe government’s responsibility to protect citizens Liberties are protections of citizens from unwarranted government action The history of rights and liberties in America involves the changing nature of the federal government The national government has stepped up its activities with regard to protecting citizens from other government agencies and private actors
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What are Civil Rights? A civil right is an enforceable right or privilege Civil rights are given by nations to their citizens, while natural or human rights are rights claimed for all humanity by nature of being born. Locke argued that the natural rights of life, liberty and property should be civil rights and protected by the state as part of the social contract Examples of civil rights are freedom of speech, press, and assembly; the right to vote; freedom from involuntary servitude; and the right to equality in public places. Discrimination occurs when the civil rights of an individual are denied or interfered with because of their membership in a particular group or class, or based on race, sex, religion, age, previous condition of servitude, physical limitation, national origin, and in some instances sexual preference. The most important expansion of civil rights in the U.S. was the 13 th amendment, which abolished slavery throughout the U.S. In response, various states enacted "black codes" which were intended to limit the civil rights of the newly free slaves. In 1868 the 14th Amendment ensured that no state "shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of the citizens of the United States... [or] deprive any person of life, liberty, or property without due process of law, [or] deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.“ During the "reconstruction era" that followed, Congress enacted numerous civil rights statutes. Many of these statutes are still in force today and protect individuals from discrimination and from the deprivation of their civil rights.
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The First Constitutional Amendments: The Bill of Rights Most of the framers opposed the Bill of Rights Anti-Federalists made it an issue, and some states made ratification dependent on addition of the Bill of Rights Congress’s first session sent the first ten amendments to the states for their ratification The amendments explicitly limit the Federal government's powers and protect the people’s rights How? By preventing Congress from abridging freedom of speech, freedom of the press, freedom of assembly, freedom of religious worship and Insisting on the right to bear arms, preventing unreasonable search and seizure, cruel and unusual punishment, and self-incrimination, guaranteeing due process of law and a speedy public trial by jury
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The First Constitutional
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