Free Essay

The Bill of Rights

In: Other Topics

Submitted By mechanic3317
Words 1506
Pages 7
Abstract
An examination of the Bill of Rights and how it extends the protection of the civil liberties to the population, with emphasis on the First, Fourth, and Sixth Amendments, and a description of a public policy implemented to protect the constitutional rights of suspects, when interrogated by the police.

The Bill of Rights and Civil Liberties
The Bill of Rights is the first initial inclusion of laws to the Constitution, collected as the first ten amendments out of a total of 27 other amendments. This paper discusses three amendments in the Bill of Rights which includes the First, Fourth, and Sixth Amendments, with explanation of each amendment, and how it extends the protection of civil liberties to the population.
The First Amendment
This Amendment enacts the protection of free speech, religion, press, assembly, and freedom to petition the government (Dautrich & Yolof, 2011). The purpose of this Amendment is to prevent any directive establishing an adherence to a specific religion or any law prohibiting free practice of speech, assembly, and freedom of the press (Volkomer, 2011)
The Amendment exclusively affects all individuals living in the U.S. including citizens within the U.S. government. It protects the right for an individual to express themselves freely, without fear of retaliation.
The First Amendment is so important, because it protects the rights of the citizens to engage in open discussions and debate on public issues, which are important in any democracy. It also prevents Congress from passing any laws that would establish an official religion, and with that limit religious freedom. Also the right to petition the government of press and freedom to gather peacefully, has also helped protect democracy, and has given people the right to petition the government, or change laws that are unfair. (USCIS, 2011)
An example of how this Amendment can be used in court is the case of Texas v. Johnson 1989. This case was brought to the Supreme Court, after Johnson, a young activist, burnt the American Flag at the Republican National Convention, in Dallas, Texas in 1984. This was done at a protest march against President Reagan’s policies, in front of the Dallas City Hall. The case was presided over by the State of Texas Courts, where Johnson was found guilty of vandalism, but ultimately was appealed, and presented to the Supreme Court in 1989. He was found not guilty of vandalism, and it was determined that it was his First Amendment Right to practice freedom of speech, as long as it was done to make a point, and not just to destroy property.(Cornell Law, 2012)
The Fourth Amendment
This Amendment gives the public the protection from unreasonable searches and seizures of homes, and searches without warrants, with the exception of probable cause or a judicial body allowing a warrant (Volkomer, 2011).
The purpose of this Amendment is to it to prevent a law enforcing body or government from exploiting or violating one’s personal space or their right to privacy.
The importance of this Amendment is to allow people to utilize their rights and freedom to personal privacy, whether it is in their homes or even cars, limiting how, and where the government can conduct a search without a warrant. (Volkomer, 2011)
The effects of violating this amendment can be very serious. The exclusionary rule which is bestowed within the Fourth Amendment permits any evidence gathered illegally by prosecutors or law enforcement agents, regardless of content, to be invaluable in court, rendering evidence unusable (Cornell Law, 2012). This rule is similar to the double jeopardy rule in the Fifth Amendment, since it protects a defendant from self –incrimination.
This Amendment is essential in court, because it acts as a counter – incentive factor towards prosecutors who are willing to use illegally procured evidence against a defendant. The amendment is very important in preventing abuse of state police powers. An example is the case Arizona v. Gant, 2009. In this case a man was arrested for driving with a suspended license after pulling into his own driveway. After being handcuffed and shoved into the back of the police car, his car was searched, and a gun and bag of cocaine were found. In this case, the Supreme Court ruled that there had been no reasonable cause for the search, because there was no traffic violation, nor danger to the police officer. It was considered a violation of the man’s Fourth Amendment Rights. The previous “Belton” precedent was rejected by the Supreme Court. (Erowid, 2009)
The Sixth Amendment
This Amendment ensures that anyone accused of a crime has a right to a fair trial by a jury; have a lawyer; and is informed of the charges brought against them. (Ramsey, 2012)
The purpose of this amendment is to ensure that the criminal justice system is fair to everyone and that no one is tried without a fair trial. This amendment is important, especially considering the history of illegal lynching in this country. (Volkomer, 2011)
This Amendment affects anyone who is being prosecuted for a criminal offense. It gives the defendant some basic rights to a fair trial; to have a lawyer present even if they can’t afford one; to confront witnesses; to subpoena witnesses for their defense; and to be informed of their charges. (Dautrich & Yalof, 2011)
The Sixth Amendment is very important when it comes to criminal cases and the rights of the accused. When it comes to capital punishment, fairness and justice are extremely important to ensure that the defendant was given every opportunity to prove his/her innocence. Also the Sixth Amendment is important in preventing the public from taking the laws into their own hands, as was often seen in the Southern States during the civil rights struggle, where the lynching of Black suspects by White mobs was a common practice. (ACLU, 2011)
An example of how the Sixth Amendment was used in a case is the Gideon v. Wainwright case of 1962. Gideon was charged with breaking and entering by a Florida State Court. He couldn’t afford a lawyer, and asked for a public lawyer, but was denied one because his case was not a capital case. As a result of defending himself, he was sentenced to five years in prison. The case was ultimately brought before the Supreme Court, where a unanimous decision was reached, that the State Courts must provide counsel for poor defendants who can’t afford a lawyer, under the Sixth Amendment. (IIT Chicago-Kent College, 2012)
Policy Implemented when Interrogating a Suspect
A policy that protects the civil liberties of the suspect before or during interrogation by a law enforcement officer is called the Miranda Rights. This policy was named after a Supreme Court Case Miranda v. Arizona, where it was ruled that the self –incriminating statement of a suspect who was not informed of his rights, was unconstitutional and could not be submitted as evidence in court. (Volkomer, 2011)
This policy pertains to all types of crimes, which require an arrest or interrogation by the police. The suspect’s Fifth Amendment rights must be upheld at all times, before and during the interrogation process. The rationale for this policy is to let the suspect know, that he or she has the right to remain silent, and that any information during the interrogation can be used against the person. Also suspects have a right to know that they have a right to an attorney even if they can’t afford one, and they must understand what the interrogator tells them. This protects their Sixth Amendment rights as well. The flaws of this policy, is that everyone is not fluent in English, and if a suspect does not understand the rights read to them, the testimony is not admissible in court. (Cornell Law, 2012)
The Miranda rights are a protection against coercive interrogations by extending the Fifth Amendment. The only exception is a case where there is a “public safety” issue. In that case, the Miranda Rights can be waived.
Conclusion:
Based on the above discussed findings, the First, Fourth, Fifth and Sixth Amendments are instrumental in providing the protection of civil liberties to person accused of committing a crime.

References
Arizona v. Grant. (2012). Erowid. Retrieved February 6, 2012, from http://www.erowid.org
Civil Liberties. (2012). The Oyez Project at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law | A Multimedia Archive of the Supreme Court of the United States. Retrieved from http://www.oyez.org
Criminal Law Cases. (2012). LII | LII / Legal Information Institute. Retrieved February 6, 2012, from http://www.law.cornell.edu/
Dautrich, K., & Yalof, D. A. (2011). American government (2nd ed.). Mason, OH: Cengage learning.
Ramsey, U. (2012, January 29). American government. Lecture presented at Live Chat in Colorado Technical University Online. Retrieved January 31, 2012.
USCIS.org - Find Government Related Products And Services. (2011). Retrieved February 6, 2012, from http://www.uscis.org
Volkomer, W. E. (2011). American government (13th ed.). Pearson Education. is very important in a democratic society; this gives the people the power to be involved in their government. Freedom

Similar Documents

Premium Essay

Bill of Rights

...Bill of Rights & Amendments Paper Intro The United States is a country that was founded on the principle of freedom; it took the Bill of Rights to be added to the Constitution to guarantee citizens freedom. The Bill of Rights consists of the first ten amendments in the constitution; a document that outlines how the new American government would be created and operated. The Constitution was ratified in 1788 which was the start of protecting the interests of each citizen, two years later the Bill of Rights was proposed by congress and went into effect in 1791. It was designed to prevent the government from taking total power over citizens and to provide them with legal defenses. This essay will discuss the understanding of how amendments become apart of the constitution and how it adopted the Bill of Rights. As well as the changes in society that led to amendments XIII-XV that became part of the constitution. The effects of the Bill of Rights to this country have been beneficial; they lay down the blueprint for freedom by allowing citizens a voice. The failure of the Articles of Confederation was what led to the Constitution; The Articles had a weak national government with no president, or judicial branch. Hence, this led to the Constitution, which showed the three branches of government legislative, executive and judicial; it describes the power of each branch. It was set up by our forefathers in order to change it if necessary. It tells the relationship of the......

Words: 1019 - Pages: 5

Premium Essay

Bill of Rights

...Bill of Rights Ronald Lee Similarity Index 0% Similarity by Source Internet Sources: 0% Publications: 0% In this paper of the Bill of Rights and several amendments will be discuss, which is the First, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, and Fourteenth. Also will discuss how the Bill of Rights evaluates different areas in security and the administration of justice. Such as challenges of law enforcement, roles of the courts, roles of the security, and recommendation. The main purpose of the Bill of Rights is to protect the freedoms and the rights of the American citizens. Also, so that every individual can worship wherever he or she feel comfortable without restrictions. If an individual born inside the country or outside the country his or her citizenship as an America and recognized as an America. American citizens protected from seizures and searches by law enforcement agencies unless there is a warrant presented. The warrant must be present before the seizure and search take place. The warrant will specify what and who will be search so that an individual privacy not invaded. The United States Constitution of the first amendment states Congress cannot make laws condensing the right for people the peacefully assemble, speech, the press, and religion (Bill of Rights). Chris Neefus wrote article that challenge the First Amendment. The title of that article was “Justice Breyer suggests that burning a Quran could be like shouting fire in a crowded......

Words: 1932 - Pages: 8

Premium Essay

Bill of Rights

...Bill of Rights The First, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution will be analyzed. This paper will discuss the relationship between the different areas of the Bill of Rights and the administration of justice and security. The aims of and the challenges fronting different federal, state, and local enforcement agencies will be discussed along with roles of the federal, state, and local court systems with regard to public safety and civil rights. The goals of the juvenile justice system with those other agencies will be discussed as well as the roles of private security organizations with respect to both corporate and public protection. Last there will be recommendations to solutions of the numerous tasks fronting criminal justice organizations and security organizations (University of Phoenix Syllabus, 2013). Amendments First Amendments The First Amendment explains that it is the independence of demonstration of the media and religious beliefs. This particular portion of the constitution forbids any type of reticence of communication, worship in addition to the capability to gather people calmly. This permits for every American to communicate without restrictions and worship wherever they want nationwide (The United States Constitution, 2010). Fourth Amendment The Fourth amendment was written to protect the people and their private property. In this amendment the people were promised their safety from illegal search and seizures......

Words: 2090 - Pages: 9

Premium Essay

The Bill of Rights

...THE BILL OF RIGHTS UNDER 1987 PHILIPPINE CONSTITUTION: A FUNDAMENTAL PRINCIPLE IMPORTANT TO FILIPINOS Thesis Statement: As democratic countries raised in the world, we people should know our rights in order us to protect or defend our credibility from any violations against our will. I. Introduction: Historical Context, definition of bill of rights and philippine constitution, and thesis statement II. History of the philippine constitution A. Articles 1. Bill of Rights a. Most important section b. Least important section B. Basis of the Constitution C. Implementation from 1987-1999 D. Implementation from 2000- present III. Impact of having bill of rights A. In the first day of implementation 1. To poor people 2. To middle class people 3. To rich people B. In the present IV. Importance of having bill of rights A. Present 1. Society a. As students 2. Government b. As leaders 3. Industry a. As professionals b. As skilled workers B. Future V. Effects of having bill of rights A. International 1. Economic talks 2. Sovereignty talks 3. Peace talks B. National or Local VI. Conclusion: In 1986, after the People Power Revolution which ousted the reigm of President Ferdinand Marcos, and following the inauguration of President Corazon Aquino as the first female president of the Philippine Republic, she issued Proclamation No. 3, which declare the......

Words: 507 - Pages: 3

Premium Essay

Bill of Rights

...The Bill of Rights is a document stating the protections of individual rights and gives the government limited power. The Bill of Rights became the first 10 amendments to the Constitution. The Bill of Rights purpose was to tell the liberties of the people that the government could not infringe upon. Each amendment are very important to the way we live society today. The Bill of Rights helped settle many issues, but also took many hours and debates to what it consisted of. All of the 27 amendments define citizens rights or the second Bill of Rights (11-27) mostly deal with government issues. The beginning of our rights started with “All men are created equal” since then many documents like the Constitution have been made. From that point up to the creation of our Bill of Rights, the struggle for freedoms would possess the nation to inherit many different reforms and ideas to create the ideal society that the nation desired during the tyranny of England. The Second Continental Congress was formed during the times of revolution as a form of government represented by all thirteen American colonies. The Congress noted delegates from each state to represent that state, a total of fifty-five in all from all states except for Rhode Island, although a total of seventy-four delegates were chosen to represent. They created the Constitution and the debates began the last struggle between the Antifederalist that were opposed the Constitution and the Federalist that voted for the......

Words: 358 - Pages: 2

Premium Essay

The Bill of Rights

...The Bill of Rights Rebecca D. Joy Pima Community College Business 220 Professor Browning March 11, 2014 The Bill of Rights The Bill of Rights creation began over two hundred years ago in 1789 and were ratified and put into effect December 15, 1791. “The Bill of Rights may be old but they are still America’s most debated and discussed section of the United States Constitution”, (Stutzman). The Bill of Rights were created to put limits on government’s power over the people and extend the powers to the citizens of the United States of America. James Madison wrote the bill of rights (Who wrote the bill of rights, 1), but he was not a true supporter of the bill of rights and did not think that the constitution needed to be changed. Thomas Jefferson convinced Madison of the need to protect the people from the government no matter the size of the current government and together they wrote The Bill of Rights. George Mason's example of the Virginia Declaration of Rights and other states Declaration of rights, also helped Jefferson and Madison in forming The Bill of Rights. First amendment: The freedom of speech, press, religion, assembly, and petition. This amendment protects American’s rights to speak or write personal opinions, religiously worship any religion and in any manner a person wants to, assemble groups large or small in a peaceful manner, and petition the government if necessary. Second amendment: The right to bear arms. The amendment began as a way...

Words: 892 - Pages: 4

Premium Essay

Bill of Rights

...Which of the Bill of Rights is most important to you and why? The Bill of Rights was written for the American people for two reasons. The first was to pacify Anti-Federalist’s fears of an overwhelmingly powerful central government provided by the Constitution. The second reason was to protect the freedoms secured by the Americans after their war for independence. Without a Bill of Rights, the people feared that the government would have the power to oppress and to control everything. In my opinion, the First Amendment is the most important. By taking each letter in the word first, I will explain why the First Amendment is important to me. F-freedom; The First Amendment states, 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. This is quite possibly the amendment that makes the United States the democratic and orderly country that it is. The choice of freedom to say and listen to whatever one wants is the ultimate independence. I-immeasurable; the importance of the First Amendment can't be measured. The freedoms and liberties it gives me are too great to mark with a value. This part of the Bill of Rights allows me to have a voice in the country I live in. R-requisite; The First Amendment is requisite, or absolutely needed. It sets boundaries that give the......

Words: 447 - Pages: 2

Premium Essay

The Bill of Rights

...Student’s Name Instructor’s Name Course Date The Bill of Rights According to Lewis (35), the US Bill of Rights constitutes the first ten amendments of the US constitution that prohibit the powers of the federal government. Written by James Madison, the Bill of Rights seeks to offer constitutional protection for the personal freedom and liberty of the US citizens. In addition to these personal freedoms, the Bill of Rights limits governmental powers in controlling judicial proceedings, with a reserve of specific powers to the public and individual states. Therefore, the Bill of Rights presents the US citizens with freedoms that were demystified in the principal Constitution, and transfers to the states or the citizens, any power that the main constitution does not grant to the federal government (Lewis 38). In the Bill of Rights, provisions bestowed upon states or individuals limit the power of the federal government (Levi 215). To start with, most of the amendments address the provisions about the people, and this paper looks at just a few of them. The first amendment of the Bill of Rights warrants freedoms of individuals in terms of religion, assembly, the right to expression, and petition. It limits the Congress from taking sides on religion, or controlling an individual’s religious beliefs. The amendment requires the Congress to allow people to speak freely, to promote a free press, and to permit peaceful assemblies of the citizens. The second amendment allows......

Words: 1076 - Pages: 5

Premium Essay

Bill of Rights

...Bill of Rights In 1776 the declaration of independence of the United States was signing as the constitution, the supreme law of the land. This famous document has as a purpose a system of government that would prevent one individual from having complete power. However, some states were in opposition with the constitution because it did not contain protection rights against a government. In 1791, 10 amendments were known as the bill of rights. This document was added to the constitution to ensure the individual rights of Americans citizens and protect them against any government. Now days there are four amendments on with most prisoners are such as; first amendment, fourth amendment, eight amendment and fourteenth amendment. The first amendment brings a general protection for the free speech, establishing of religion and the free exercising of any religion, press, the right of the people peaceable to assemble and to petition the government for a redress of grievance. The first amendment provide equality freedom for all the citizens of the United States, but In the history of prisons of this nation the inmates claims an innumerate irruptions of the first amendment such as; the freedom of speech and expression like the visits of friends and loved ones, those visits are a form of expression. However, the prison visits are not a complete right because it has a lot of limitations. Other example of expression is correspondence but not all the mails are sending it to the inmates...

Words: 855 - Pages: 4

Premium Essay

Bill of Rights

...Bill Of Rights In 1791, the Bill of Rights, consisting of 10 amendments, was ratified into the constitution. The document’s purpose was to spell out the liberties of the people that the government could not infringe upon. Considered necessary by many at the time of its development, the Bill of Rights became the cause for a huge debate between two different factions: The Federalists and the Anti-Federalists. The Federalists were those who thought that there should be a new Union created with a strong centralized government and individual regional governments. They felt that it was not necessary for there to be a bill of rights because it was implied that those rights the Constitution did not specifically state would be handed down to the states. On the other hand, the Anti-Federalists were opposed to such a form of government on the grounds that the Constitution, in which it was outlined, lacked clarity in the protections of the individuals. The Anti-Federalists—whose memory of British oppression was still fresh in their minds—wanted certain rights and guarantees that were to be apart of the constitution (Glasser 1991). A clear demonstration of the Anti-Federalist attitude was performed by Samuel Bryan, who published a series of essays named the ‘Cenitnal Essays,’ which “assailed the sweeping power of the central government, the usurpation of state sovereignty, and the absence of a bill of rights guaranteeing individual liberties such as freedom of speech and freedom of...

Words: 1660 - Pages: 7

Premium Essay

Bill of Rights

...Bill of Rights The Bill of Rights is a crucial component because it outlines the fundamental rights and freedoms of the people in the U.S. Constitution as Amendments 1-10, making sure every citizen is entitled to these rights and not just the majority. In criminal cases, it requires indictment by grand jury for any capital or "infamous crime," guarantees a speedy public trial with an impartial and local jury, and prohibits double jeopardy. There are certain Amendments that pertain specifically to the criminal justice system, which includes the fourth, fifth, sixth, eighth of the ten amendments and then the fourteenth. These amendments are meant to make sure that all individuals are treated fairly if they are arrested or suspected of crimes. Of the first 10, I choose the Fourth Amendment which states, “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized”. This basically means that no one can enter your home without a search warrant. Although there are exceptions, any evidence discovered in violation of this amendment could be excluded. The case law for this that I am using is Weeks v. United States, 232 U.S. 383 (1914). Police officers in Kansas City, Missouri went to the house of Mr.......

Words: 332 - Pages: 2

Premium Essay

Bill of Rights

...States Bill of Rights ______________________________________________________________________________ Fundamentals of Criminal Law CJSA 1327 Week 1 Essay #3 Not too long ago our nation was young, new, and in need of structure and in need of a government. To solve this issue, the United States Constitution was drafted and implemented across the territories. After the constitution was created, there was immediate pressure from anti-federalists who opposed constitutional ratification. This then gave birth to the Bill of Rights, which was to set limits on the government’s actions in regard to personal liberties. The Bill of rights is a collective name for the first 10 amendments to the United States Constitution. It was introduced by James Madison before the 1st United States Congress and then proposed to congress in September 25, 1789. The amendments were ratified on December 15, 1791 by congress. There originally were twelve amendments proposed, but only ten amendments made the final cut. Over time, amendments had been added totaling twenty-seven. The 10 amendments guaranteed a list of personal freedoms, reserving some powers to the states and public. They also put a limit to the government’s power in judicial and any other proceedings. The 10 original amendments are (1st) Freedom of speech, religion, and right to petition, (2nd) Right to bear arms, (3rd) Protection against quartering troops, (4th) Protection against unreasonable search and seizure, (5th) Rights in......

Words: 485 - Pages: 2

Premium Essay

Bill of Rights

...Title: “The Bill of Rights” March 12, 2011 Source: Jackson J. Spielvogel, p. 331 Summary: The accession of James II (1685-1688) to the crown guaranteed a new constitutional crisis for England. He was a devout Catholic and made religion the center of controversy between the king and Parliament. In 1687, James issued a declaration of indulgence that suspended all laws that excluded Catholics and Puritans from office. The Parliaments members did not object due to his old age. They knew his successors would be his Protestant daughters Mary and Anne, the children from his first wife. On June 10, 1688, a son was born to James II’s second wife who was a Catholic. Mary’s husband, the Dutch Chief executive, William of Orange and a group of prominent noblemen were invited to invade England. William and Mary put together an army and invaded England while James, his wife and their infant son fled to France. England’s revolution was not about whether there would be a monarch, but who would be monarch. In January 1689, William and Mary accepted the throne along with the provisions of a bill of rights. The Bill of Rights affirmed Parliament’s right to make laws and levy taxes and made it impossible for kings to oppose or do without Parliament by stipulating that standing armies could be raised only with the consent of Parliament. The rights of citizens to petition the sovereign, keep arms, have a jury trial and not be subject to excessive bail......

Words: 496 - Pages: 2

Premium Essay

The Bill of Rights

...The Bill of Rights Kimm Baker AJS-552 April 30, 2012 Steven J. Duplissis J.D. Abstract The first, fourth, fifth, sixth, and fourteenth amendments to the United States Constitution are vital to the citizens of the United States safety and freedoms. These amendments affect the administration of justice and security in different ways we will discuss this relationship and how each are affected. Every division of law enforcement faces challenges, maintains certain objectives to serve, and protect the public. This paper will discuss the roles of the federal, state, and local court systems to public safety and civil rights. Before closing, we will discuss the objectives of juvenile justice, the role of private security organizations with respect to both corporate, and public protection, along with recommendations for solutions to the challenges faced by the criminal justice system, and private security organizations. The Bill of Rights The Bill of Rights are important to every member of society to ensure their rights are protected and justice is serve for all parties involved in civil and criminal cases heard within the courts system of the United States. Victims and offenders have certain rights during the course of a trial and all members of the court and law enforcement must follow special guidelines mandated by the Constitution when pursuing any case under the law. Each Amendment of the Constitution is equally important however, this paper will only explain the......

Words: 2045 - Pages: 9

Premium Essay

Bill of Right

...The United States Bill of Right is known to be the first ten amendment of the United States Constitution. It serves to provide protection to the rights of liberty and property basically it provides freedom to individuals personally. The amendment was produced by James Madison to the first United States Congress as a legislative article. This Bill of Right plays an important role in American Law and is a vital symbol of the freedom and culture of our nation. The Fourth amendment to the United States Constitution is the part of the Bill of Right which guards against unreasonable searches and seizures alongside with obtaining any warrant supported by probable cause. The Fifth Amendment protects against abuse of government authority in a legal procedure. The 5th Amendment to the US Constitution was passed by ratified on December 15, 1791 as part of the Bill of Rights. In the Fifth Amendment no person shall be held to capital to answer unless on a presentment of a Grand Jury. The Sixth Amendment to the United States Constitution is what sets forth rights in the prosecution of criminals. In a criminal prosecution the accuser have the right to a speedy and public trial. The accused has the right to know what they are been charged for and why they are been held in jail. They also have the right to know who is saying that they've committed the crime, and the right to ask them questions. The Eight Amendment to the United States Constitution protects against excessive bail and......

Words: 738 - Pages: 3