Advantages & Disadvantages of Public Order & Individual Rights

Topics: Rights, United States Bill of Rights, United States Constitution Pages: 6 (2095 words) Published: November 2, 2008
The Advantages and Disadvantages of Individual Rights and Public Order What are our individual rights and what is the meaning of public order advocates, and how can the advantages and disadvantages that are held in response to those rights be understood? Our individual rights are our moral principles sanctioning a man’s freedom of action in a social context. To live rationally by one’s reason in society, man needs only one thing from his fellow men; freedom of action. He requires rights to those actions necessary to support his own life, the most fundamental right being the right to life from which all other rights, including the right to liberty, property, and the pursuit of happiness derive. (Retrieved October 9, 2008 from Public order advocates are those who suggest that under certain circumstances involving criminal threats to public safety, the interests of society (especially crime control and social order) should take precedence over individual rights. (Schmalleger, 2007). There are various disadvantages and advantages to the public order advocates as well for individual rights. Individuals have their own understanding of what they believe in and, what they stand for. This essay will give a more detailed variety of advantages and disadvantages to be informative to readers as well as unbiased. We live in a society where much conflict exists. People disagree daily among a variety of issues however; the debate among individual rights and public order is increasing among advocates for both sides. Many have argued that public rights should take precedence over individual rights, even though this concept violates the US Constitution. Nevertheless, individual rights should not be compromised in order to obtain public order. Individual rights allow a person the liberty to live as he or she desires. The very essence of how this country was established also affords us the freedom of choice. In addition, the Bill of Rights safeguards the individual rights of American citizens against the power of the government. The judicial process would be highly unfavorable without this protection. As a result, the right of “due process” is a crucial element within the criminal justice system.

The Fifth Amendment requires that the government is fair and orderly throughout the judicial process. This is an individual right that not only protects American citizens but, protects non-citizens as well. A federal judge ruled in favor of an Egyptian immigrant who was fighting deportation since his arrest in 1998. He was represented by an attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) that claimed he escaped Egypt to avoid religious persecution and torture.

According to Nissley (2008), “A human being does not forfeit the right to be free from torture because he is ineligible for admission into this country," Judge [Thomas I. Vanaskie] wrote. "Freedom from torture is a 'fundamental right,' surely protected by the Fifth Amendment, regardless of a person's immigration status.”… The government cannot return someone to a country without a procedure that satisfies due process." The individual rights of American citizens are not only protected by due process but, through several aspects of civil and criminal law. Unlawful search and seizures, legal counsel, speedy trail, and cruel and unusual punishment are common violations that have occurred in the judicial process. As a result, lawsuits were filed on behalf of the accused and in addition, advocates of individual rights have opted to form organizations designed to support the fundamental rights of all humanity.

Over the past few decades, mainly after the civil rights era, these various organizations began to protest openly about basic human rights. Women’s right (pro-choice activist), gay and lesbian rights, animal rights, and environmental rights are the most common that may affect American citizens in some way. However, these groups are...
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