Amendment 1

Freedom

What does Amendment 1 state?

The 1st amendment states, "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."
F.U.N. the First Amendmant Song

Freedom of Speech

The 1st Amendment says that you have the freedom of speech. Libel and slander is a part of defamation. Libel is the writing of people, and slander is speaking about someone or something. They came up with this amendment because the framers did not want anything like a British monarchy. If you would speech out and say your opinion, you would probably be sent to get feathered and tarred. They wanted freedom, and at the same time control. Because of this, they made the rule of freedom of speech. In Virginia, at Harrisonburg School the superintendent made a decision to ban a display about banned books. It is like he is saying that they do not only ban books, but that it is also necessary to ban discussion about the books and about them being banned. I think that people have lot of freedom of speech, but in some cases, people have too much freed because it is not stated very clearly in the constitution. I think they should make another amendment clarifying what it means.

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Freedom of Religion

Freedom of religion is when you can express your religious beliefs without being arrested or unconstitutional. They made this rule because if you spoke your opinion about religion King George would give you cruel and unusual punishment. Cheerleaders in Texas expressed their religion by writing bible quotes on their banners. The school was unhappy with these religious quotes, so the issue ended up going to court. Judge Thomas allowed the cheerleaders to continue using their spiritually quotes. I think that people apply the amendment in a good way today. People definitely have more say in religion then they did in colonial America.
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Freedom of Press

Freedom of press is when the press can say or write anything they want to that is not dangerous or would harm someone. They made this rule because if you wrote about someone in the paper that King George did not like, you would receive punishment. On October 16, the House of Representatives passed a bill that would protect writer from being sent to jail for not reveal their sources. The White House threatened to veto the bill, due to it threatening national security. I think that freedom of press is a very good right to have. You should be able to write and say what you want. Sometimes it tis offensive, but what you write has more to do with your moral values rather than the constitution.
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Freedom to Assemble

The freedom to assemble is the right to gather, or assemble people to share common interest, or speak your opinion, in a peaceful manner. They made the right because if you gathered people and spoke about someone, King George would send you to get punished. In Charlotte, North Carolina, people gathered to speak about the president. More groups gathered with different opinions. At the park, police came to make sure the peaceful gathering stayed that way; it did. That is a practice of their freedom to assemble in the 1st Amendment. I think that it is a very good right to have because it lets you speak your mind to people in a public setting. People seem to respect the right and its limits, and I think it is used in a good way.

Right to Petition

The right to petition give people the right to petition someone. The right to petition has been going on since the Magna Carta. In the Bill of Rights 1689, it said, "right of the subjects to petition the king." In the case United States v. Harriss, in 1954, the Supreme Court upheld the authority of Congress to require certain lobbyists to register. I think that this right is used a lot, and people have used it the right way.

Amendment 2 - Right to Bear Arms

What is the Second Amendment?

The second Amendment states, "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." That means that people have the right to have a gun for their safety. The people of the Colonial Americas wanted to be safe and have protection from the British. Also, they needed guns for their rebellion. After the war, they liked the idea of people having safety by having guns with them. There was a shooting at Sandy Hook in Connecticut. Someone used a gun in the wrong way and shot many children and teachers in the school. People continue to question the right to have guns and what the limit is. I think that it is fair to be able to have hand guns in your home for safety, but there should be some stated limits; like the types of guns, or at what age it is appropriate to have one.

Alexa Marcus