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CIVIL LIBERTIES AND CIVIL RIGHTS

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Civil rights are the powers or privileges guaranteed to the individual and are ... Today, civil rights have also come to include the objectives of laws that ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: CIVIL LIBERTIES AND CIVIL RIGHTS


1
CIVIL LIBERTIES AND CIVIL RIGHTS
  • The U.S. Constitution guarantees Americans a
    large constellation of rights and liberties. The
    terms civil liberties and civil rights are
    often used interchangeably in this context,
    although their meanings are somewhat different.
  • Civil liberties are freedoms that are
    guaranteed to the individual they take the form
    of negative constraints on the power of
    government i.e., 1st Amendment freedoms -
    speech, press, religion. They declare what the
    government CANNOT DO.
  • Civil rights are the powers or privileges
    guaranteed to the individual and are protected
    from arbitrary removal at the hands of government
    of other individuals i.e., right to vote, right
    to jury trial in criminal cases.
  • Today, civil rights have also come to include
    the objectives of laws that further these and
    other values. For instance, the Civil Rights Act
    of 1964 furthered the value of equality by
    establishing prohibitions against discrimination
    in public accommodations and employment
    practices. Civil rights declare what the
    government MUST DO or PROVIDE.

2
  • When we refer to both civil liberties and civil
    rights under the U.S. Constitution, we mean the
    protections enshrined in the Bill of Rights and
    the 14th Amendment. These include
  • freedom of religion
  • freedom of the press
  • freedom of speech
  • right to peaceably assemble
  • right to petition government for redress of
    grievances
  • right to privacy
  • rights of the criminally accused/requirement of
    due process of law
  • the guarantee of equal protection of the laws
  • There are also several civil liberties/rights
    outlined in the main body of the Constitution
    i.e., prohibition against ex post facto laws and
    the suspension of the writ of habeas corpus among
    others. Additionally, many state constitutions
    contain bills of rights, protecting many of the
    same rights and liberties associated with the
    U.S. Constitution.

3
Civil Liberties - An Issue of Line Drawing
Perceived compelling state interest
usually arguments fall under state police power
- power to protect public safety and morals
Perceived Right of the individual
i.e., right to privacy, right of free speech,
right of free worship, etc.
The state must show why its interest is
compelling enough to justify regulation of the
individuals right.
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