Reflection on the First Amendment

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“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or the press, or the right of peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for the redress of grievances” (United States Constitution). In 1789 the anti-federalist main concern was that the Constitution’s lack of adequate guarantees for civil liberties. To provide such guarantees, the First Amendment along with the other nine Amendments known as the Bill of Rights were submitted to the states for ratification on September 25, 1789 and adopted on December 15, 1791. This was a guarantee of the essential rights and liberties that were omitted in the original documents. A series of cases will be presented in this paper to provide a clear idea of the First Amendment. Cases that have cause an impact in society and have changed or modify a law. The five right listed under the First Amendment are: Freedom of religion; “Congress shall not make no law respecting an establishment of religion”. Citizens are allowed to practice any religion they want. Freedom of Speech; it allows the free exchange of ideas necessary for effective decision –making and protects the minority from complete domination by the majority. Freedom of Press; this right is design to discourage the government from operating in secrecy and from controlling the information citizens receive. Freedom of Assembly; Unites states citizens have the right to peacefully assemble to either make a point or protest against something that don’t agree with it. Freedom of Petition; citizens have the right to petition to the government. For example if a neighborhood wants more schools or playgrounds. Civil suits, written docu... ... middle of paper ... ...dentexpression/topic.aspx?topic=clothing_dress_codes_uniforms Newdow v. United States Congress, Elk Grove Unified School District, et al., 542 U.S. 1 (2004). (2010, 10 23). Retrieved 11 20, 2010, from Wikipedia: Religious liberty in public life. (2010, 24 2010). Retrieved 11 24, 2010, from firstamendmentcenter: The Oyez Project, Morse v. Frederick , 551 U.S. ___ (2007) available at: ( HYPERLINK "" ) (last visited Friday, November 25, 2010). Starr, I. (1978). The idea of Liberty: First Amendment Freedoms. St. Paul, MN: West Publishing. West Virginia Board of Education v. Barnette, 591 (Supreme Court 6-3 03 11, 1943).

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