The Amendments of the Constitution

By Alana Kosches Period 2

The 27 Amendments Song :)

Amendment I: Freedom Speech, Religion, Press, Assembly, and the Right to Petition

The Constitution of the United States of America 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."
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Understanding the First Amendment of the US Constitution

Freedom of Speech

People have the right to say whatever they want to say. However, there are some limitations. People cannot say something that could cause danger. People need to think before they speak.
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This amendment came up in the Feiner v. New York. Feiner was talking bad about the president while he was standing on a wooden box. The police came and told him three times to get out of the wooden box. He was arrested and said that the police violated his right to freedom of speech.

Freedom of Religion

Freedom of Religion is that the government cannot interfere with the citizens religion. The government cannot tell the people what religion to believe in. The amendment came up when Demon Vix, an atheist, who objected to the religious scenes in the public area of Santa Monica in California. He made many signs saying that all religions are alike. The government finally concluded that Demon Vix had the right to say those things about religions because of the 1st amendment of the United States of America.


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This picture explains why people were happy with this idea of freedom of religion. People were discriminating against another person's religion. Once the First Amendment was passed, people stopped discriminating one another.

Freedom of Press

The First Amendment gives the press (newspapers, books, radio, television, movies, and the Internet) the right to say whatever they want. They have the right to criticize the government in whatever way they want. However, the press are not subject to prior restraint. In the case of New York Times Co. v. United States, the United States decided that the New York Times and the Washington Post were allowed to say whatever they want about the government because of freedom of press.
High school journalists on freedom of the press
This video is about a group of young journalists and their opinion on freedom of the press.

Freedom of Assembly

Citizens have the right to hold assembles and hold demonstrations. People may pass out pamphlets, hold meetings, and peaceably advertise their beliefs. However, the group must have a permit to do this. There was a case when African American high school and college students who marched in separate groups to the South Carolina State House to peacefully express their ideas on the civil rights of African-Americans. They were not considered violent or threaten to become violent. Police officials asked them to leave or they would be arrested. The petitioners did not leave. They claimed that they were allowed to do this because in the 1st Amendment, they have freedom of assembly. This was proven true by the court. This case is known as Edwards v. South Carolina.
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This political cartoon shows how people have the right to assemble.

Right to Petition

The Right to Petition means that people have the right to make suggestions to the government. The case of John Doe #1 v. Reed was about how the signatures on a vote that were disclosed did not violate the First Amendment.
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This political cartoon shows a person reading a petition sent to Congress. The people had the right to send this petition because they are given the right to do so in the First Amendment.

Why is the First Amendment included in our Constitution?

The First Amendment was included in our Constitution because the Founders wanted the Constitution to protect the basic rights of Americans without government interfering. British Parliament did not give us the rights that we have under the First Amendment. That is why the American Revolution was fought. That is why they made the First Amendment protect our basic rights of freedom of speech, religion, press, assembly, and the right to petition.

Amendment I in Everyday Life

I think the First Amendment is applied the way it should be because I believe that freedom of speech, religion, press, assembly, and the right to petition are the basic rights of a citizen of the United States of America. I believe that all the the parts of the amendment are very reasonable. In freedom of speech, I think that all speech is expectable, except speech the causes danger. In freedom of religion, I believe that anyone should be allowed to practice what they believe in. I do not believe in everyone thinking the same way. Everyone should have their own opinion on religion. In freedom of press, I think that the press has the right to say whatever they want because they are speaking their mind. In freedom of assembly, I believe that people should have the right to stand up for what they believe in by holding demonstrations. In the right to petition, I agree that you should have the right to tell government that you do not agree with them. I believe in everything that the First Amendment tells us. If I had the chance to offer my view on the amendment, I would say that the amendment is very well thought out, and I agree with everything said in it.

Amendment II: The Right to Bearing Arms

The Constitution of the United States of America states: "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of the free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."
Ron Paul explains why 2nd amendment is important!
This video shows Ron Paul's explanation of why the Second Amendment is important.

What does the Right to Bearing Arms mean?

The Right to Bearing Arms means that people are allowed to have a gun, without it being illegal. However, the Constitution is not clear on the meaning of "having a gun." The framers did not specify what type of gun a person can have. One person can interpret this amendment in a larger extent, while another can interpret it in a lesser extent. The Constitution does not say that they can only have a hand-gun or a large military gun. The Constitution is also not clear in saying how many guns a person could have. It does not say one person could only have one gun. In the case of Miller v. Texas, Franklin Miller was sentenced to be killed for shooting a police officer with an unlicensed handgun. This violated Texas law. He said that his Second Amendment rights were ignored and that the Bill of Rights should be applied to the Texas law. The Supreme Court finally stated that the Bill of Rights did not apply to the state law.
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This picture shows why the founders added the Second Amendment to the Constitution. Thomas Jefferson wanted all of the free men to never be deprived of a gun. When the "judge" says "this may require a rewrite," that means that they needed to make a new amendment. That is why this political cartoon relates to Amendment Two.

Why is the Second Amendment included in our Constitution?

The Second Amendment was included in our Constitution because the founders believed that armed citizens was a good way to defend the country when a war occurred. It would give the people the ability to defend themselves and their rights if a tyrant ever came into power. The founders feared a tyrant, so they decided to give the people the right to bear arms.

Amendment II in Everyday Life

I think that the Second Amendment is very important. I do not think that it should be the second amendment because I do not think that it is very important. I do not think that people should have the right to own a gun. There are very bad people in the world, and I do not think that a gun is supposed to be in their hands. I understand that it was a good idea to add the Second Amendment to the Constitution because citizens need to have the ability to defend themselves when they are in danger. I do not agree with why they did not establish what types of guns are necessary for a person to have or how many guns a person could have. I believe that the amendment should state these two things. I agree with why they made this amendment, but I do not agree on how they explained the amendment.