Civil Liberties in the United States
Fall, 2011
Instructor: Jim Bolner, Sr. 

We will examine our political/constitutional values in the light of our rich heritage.  Our focus will be a number of important issues in American life and how they relate to our constitutional system.

Jim Bolner's e-mail address:

I. The Constitution and the Bill of Rights
   --The Declaration of Independence and the Constitution
   --The Constitution and Liberty
   --The Bill of Rights
   --The Judicial Incorporation of the Bill of Rights Into the Fourteenth Amendment
   -- Judicial Activism: Property Activism and Personal Freedom Activism

II. Freedom of Expression
    -- Freedom of Speech
    -- Freedom of the Press
    -- Symbolic Speech

IV. Freedom of Religion
    -- The Establishment Clause
    -- The Free Exercise Clause

V. Freedom From Arbitrary Discrimination
     -- Racial Discrimination
     -- Gender Discrimination

V.  Freedom From Police Oppression
     -- Freedom from Unwarranted Searches and Seizures
     -- The Right to Counsel

VI. Contemporary Challenges
     -- Terrorism
     -- Social Media Extremism

Online Resources

Seminar Website

The Text of the Constitution (With Annotations) - From Cornell

The Annotated Constitution - GPO Document

United States Supreme Court Website

Barron v. Baltimore (1832) - The provisions of the Bill of Rights does not apply to the states.

The Slaughterhouse Cases (1873) - The Fourteenth Amendment does not prohibit states from granting monopolies.

Gitlow v. New York (1925) - The Fourteenth Amendment incorporates the First Amendment's
free speech provision and applies it to the states.

Near v. Minnesota (1932) - The Fourteenth Amendment incorporates the First Amendment's
free press provision and applies it to the states.

Schenck v. United States (1919) - The Court explains "clear and present danger" in the area of freedom of expression.

Everson v. Board of Education (1947) - The Constitution establishes a "wall of separation"
(somewhat) between "church" and "state."

Brown v. Board of Education (1954) - Segregation in public education is declared unconstitutional.

Gideon v. Wainwright (1963)  - Indigent criminal defendants have a constitutional right to an attorney.

Miranda v. Arizona (1966) - Criminal defendants must be informed of their rights to remain silent and their right to an attorney.

Roe v. Wade (1973) - State laws prohibiting abortion are unconstitutional (at certain times).

Mapp v. Ohio (1961) - Evidence seized in violation of the Fourth Amendment may not be admitted in state court.

Texas v. Johnson (1989) - Free speech extends to the burning the United States flag.

Citizens United v. FEC (2010) - Corporate campaign donations are a form of free speech.
Arizona Free Enterprise Club's Freedom ClubPAC v. Comish (2011) - State public financing of campaigns struck down.

Snyder v. Phelps (2011)  - The First Amendment protects protesters at military funerals; the protestors objected to homosexuals in the United States military.

Brown v. Entertainment Merchants Association (2011) - State law banning sale of violent video games to minors declared unconstitutional.

United States v. Stevens (2010) - Federal law prohibiting the portrayal of animal cruelty declared unconstitutional.

J. D. B. v. North Carolina (2011) - A child's age must be considered when deciding whether or
not to accord juveniles Miranda rights.

Selected Civil Liberties Cases (U. S. Supreme Court)

Number of Abortions in the United States - Guttmacher Institute

Akhil Reed Amar, "The Bill of Rights and the Fourteenth Amendment" Yale Law Journal (April, 1992).