The Bill of Rights: Amendments 1-2
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The Bill of Rights: Amendments 1-2

October 10, 2019

Welcome to another video lecture
for mr. Moser eighth grade US history class. today we’re going to be looking at
the Bill of Rights the amendments one and two let’s get started the textbook
readings for this particular video lecture comes from chapter 6 section to
the Bill of Rights pages 216 to 221 the guiding questions today are what are the
Bill of Rights what is majority rule why is it important to protect the rights of
everyone what are your rights under the First Amendment what are your rights
under the Second Amendment why is there a difference of opinion on the Second
Amendment so the bill of rights were a sar a set of rules that defines the
rights of the people the Bill of Rights became the first ten amendments to the
American Constitution remember we talked about the ratification of the
Constitution the biggest concern of the anti-federalist or that there are no
specific protections to the American people which is one of the reasons why
they were trying to block that ratification of the Constitution it
compromised the Federalist agree that one of the very first things that the
new Congress would do would put together a list of Rights these first ten
amendments to the United States Constitution becomes known as our Bill
of Rights and are some of the most protected rights we have as American
citizens the Constitution totally has 27 amendments 27 changes to it however the
first ten are just known as the Bill of Rights so why have a bill of rights well
an important idea in our democracy is this idea of majority rules right we
have elections and those elections have consequences and people that get elected
as our representatives will pass laws and those laws will have an impact on
our daily life but because we have this idea of democracy where the majority
decides these issues many Americans were very fearful that without some kind of
specific protections of the minority their rights could be taken away from
and that’s what the Bill of Rights tries to do it acts like a shield to protect
the average citizen from having their rights trampled upon so that’s the Bill
of Rights it says 10 first changes to the Constitution
this idea that that we need to have some protections from government what are we
as citizens have protections up so let’s look here at our first amendment
amendment one basically reads as follows 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 what this
basically means is that we as Americans have the Fallen protections we have
freedom of press freedom of speech freedom of religion freedom to assemble
and freedom to petition our First Amendment is some of our most cherished
protections we have as American citizens the first one being the protection of
religion government cannot establish a national religion and it cannot prohibit
people from exercising their religious belief so we have this read of freedom
of religion we are also guaranteed freedom of speech we are protected from
the right to have petition to protest against the government our press is also
protected under the freedom of the press and we have a right to peaceably
assemble to protest any actions that we feel is not appropriate that our
government is undergoing so our first amount has a really a large list of
these rights but religion speech press to assemble and protest and petition are
all cherish rights as listed in the First Amendment so how does that pertain
to you as students let me tell you a story about a student named Mary Beth
tinker see Mary Beth tinker age 13 was getting
dressed for school one December morning in 1965 in Des Moines Iowa besides her
winter clothes she wore a strip of black cloth about 2 inches wide around her
upper left arm over her sleep like a growing number of American students Mary
Beth passionately opposed the current Vietnam involvement in the Vietnam War
she wore the black armband as a symbolic statement of protest away to mourn the
dead on both sides of the war so did her brother John age 15 and their friend
Christopher Eckhardt age 16 their feelings against the war ran deep and
all day long their kids and teachers would know it unfortunately Mary Beth
had barely gotten to algebra class when she was sent to the office a few days
earlier concern over student protest the school board had banned armbands as a
disruptive influence Mary Beth John and Chris had worn the armbands anyway now
they were suspended from school furious as well as frustrated at what they saw
as unfairness to them the wearing of armbands seemed like a form of free
speech as protected by the First Amendment with their parents help they
sued the school board and their case ended up all the way to the US Supreme
Court it was a triumphant moment for students in tinker vs Des Moines
independent community school district the Supreme Court has cited in the
students favor the court ruled that students do not shed their
constitutional rights of freedom of speech or expression at the schoolhouse
gate meaning children are people to the verdict held that the First Amendment
protects the rights of public school students to express their political and
social views it was a controversial decision to be sure Mary Beth tinker
received death threats and her house was vandalized by those who thought she was
being unpatriotic but her name is down in just about every book about
constitutional law she grew up to became a nurse at Children’s Hospital and still
considers herself an advocate for children’s rights what she believes
should extensive safe living conditions health care and education her brother
John became a computer programmer and is still active in political protest and
her friend chris has worked for many years on behalf of children as a
counselor and supervisor and a child support enforcement
so was Mary Beth tinker’s rights violated under the First Amendment the
Supreme Court ruled in tinker vs Des Moines it did in fact violate Mary Beth
tankers rights to freedom of speech however since Mary Beth tinker there
have been other Supreme Court cases that have put some restrictions on student
free speech what I mean by this is that schools do have a right to regulate
student speech if it is a disruption to the learning environment or the contrary
or goes against the message of the school’s anti-gun anti-violence
anti-drug message this is why we have a dress code and that can be enforced
which doesn’t necessarily violate students freedom of speech so the First
Amendment is a protection that you do have this idea of freedom of speech the
second amendment deals with the following a well-regulated militia being
necessary to the security of a free State the right of the people to keep
and bear Arms shall not be infringed so what does this basically mean it
guarantees citizen’s right to bear arms and form a militia in essence this is
talking about the right to bear arms the right for gun ownership now this
amendment has some different viewpoints surrounding it there is a more broad
view of the second amendment which says that you can’t stop criminals from
getting guns and lawful citizens under the Second Amendment have a right to
protect themselves and an unarmed population could be very easily enslaved
by the government and therefore people also need to have guns to protect
themselves from an unlawful government this is the more broad view which a lot
of those who oppose gun regulations typically support those who support gun
regulations typically have more of a narrow view of the Second Amendment or
the amendment only specifically mentions militias which are like our National
Guard those were the volunteer armies back in the Revolutionary War days and
doesn’t necessarily specifically mention individuals however there have been
recent Court decisions have said there is an individual right implied in the
Second Amendment there are too many victims of gun-related crimes and so
there is a need to regulate guns to keep our streets in our cities safe and
that’s why there should be more regulations of guns and laws need to be
passive help stop gun and gun crimes so the Second Amendment
definitely does have some different views in regards to how people view this
amendment and how is applied so those are the first two amendments as protect
as listed under the Bill of Rights the First Amendment which is your guarantee
of speech religion and the freedom of the press and the right to assemble in
protest and then the second amendment which deals with the right to bear arms
thank you for listening as always if you have questions make sure you come talk
to your teacher

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