Reflections on the First Amendment

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Reflections on the First Amendment


April 9, 2013

Mr. De La Peña

Reflections on the First Amendment

The first amendment to the United States Constitution states that no law can be made to create a national religion, or imped the free practice of any or no religion. It also states that no one can infringe on the freedom of speech, freedom of press, and that no one can interfere with the right to peaceably assemble. This paper will cover the rights of privacy the first amendment protects, why so many cases need to be interpreted by the Supreme Court, and how those decisions are made by the Supreme Court that affects the rights of Americans today.

Rights of Privacy
The United States Constitution was written to be an instruction guide for what America’s government can do, not what the American citizens can do. The Constitution does not clearly express any right to privacy. The first 10 amendments, known as the Bill of the Rights, reflects the concerns brought up during the ratification process of the Constitution, specifically reflected the rights and privileges of the American citizen. Amendment rights are not always protected. The notable court case of Garcetti v. Ceballos questioned the privacy of an employee, in which the Supreme Court decided “When public employees make statements pursuant to their official duties, they are not speaking as citizens for First Amendment purposes, and the Constitution does not insulate their communications from employer discipline” (Garcettu v. Ceballos, 2006). It is clear from the Constitution that the Post Office was established to keep correspondence private and not to be opened by anyone except the recipient, but the envisioned right to privacy is still very debatable. In the fourth amendment citizens are protected from any reasonable searches and seizers, but in recent years airport scans, wiretapping, and many other means to protect American citizens are put to the test of what is the right...
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