Supreme Court Cases

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Gideon v. Wainwright

A person who cannot afford an attorney may have one appointed by the government

Escobedo v. Illanois

Holds that criminal suspects have a right to counsel during police interrogations under the Sixth Amendment

Miranda v. Arizona

The accused must be notified of their rights before being questioned by the police

New Jersey v. T.L.O.

A student may be searched if there is "reasonable ground" for doing so.

Plessy v. Ferguson

Segregation public places facilities were legal as long as the facilites were equal

Brown v. Board of Topeka Kansas

Overruled Plessy v. Ferguson, declared that racially segregated facilities are inherently unequal and ordered all public schools desegregated.

Baker v. Carr

"one man, one vote," prohibited racial gerrymandering; ordered state legislative districs to be near equal in population as possible

Bob Jones University v. United States

Entities with tax exempt status may not violate the U.S. Constitution and maintain that status.

Schenck v. United States

Government can limit speech if it evokes a "clear and present danger."

Texas v. Johnson

Flag burning is symbolic speech, protected by the 1st Amendment.

Griswald v. Connecticut

Established right of privacy through 4th and 9th amendments. Set a precedent for Roe v. Wade. Struck down laws making birth control illegal

Roe v. Wade

established national abortion guidelines; trimester guidelines; no state interference in 1st; state may regulate to protect health of mother in 2nd; state may regulate to protect health or unborn child in 3rd.

Webster v. Reproductive Health Services

Gave more abortion regulation power to states. Allowed states to ban abortions from public hospitals and permitted doctors to test to see if fetuses were viable

Engel v. Vitale

banned formal prayer in schools, government would not make any religion the 'official' religion.

School District of Abington Township, Pennsylvania v. Schempp

Held that a Pennsylvania law requiring Bible reading in schools violated the establishment clause of the First Amendment.

Lemon v. Kurtzman

Federal funding to religious schools must (1) have a secular legislative purpose (2) primarily not effect religion and (3) not get the government involved with religion

Wallace v. Jaffree

Moments of silent prayer at school are unconstitutional---moments of silence are not.

Sheppard v. Maxwell

Ruled that restrictions can be placed on the press in order to give someone the right to a fair trial (Came about after homicide case that was put all over media that infringed upon the fair trial)

New York Times Co. v. U.S.

Protects the freedom of the press by allowing the New York Times to publish the "Pentagon Papers" despite the Justice Department's order to restrict it

Weeks v. United States

Evidence obtained through an unreasonable search and seizure cannot be used in federal trials. (exclusionary rule)

Mapp v. Ohio

Established the exclusionary rule was applicable to the states as well as in federal courts (evidence seized illegally cannot be used in court)

Furman v. Georgia

8th Amendment Capital punishment. It raised the question of racial imbalances in the use of the death penaltyby state courts. Many states rewrote the death penalty statutes.

Gregg v. Georgia

upheld the death penalty was NOT cruel and unusual punishment

Gomillion v. Lightfoot

Racial gerrymandering ruled unconstitutional

Gray v. Sanders

Dealt with equal representation in regard to the American election system and formulated the famous "one person, one vote" standard for legislative districting.

Wesberry v. Sanders

Requires each state to draw its U.S. Congressional districts so that they are approximately equal in population

University of California Regents v. Bakke

Ruling on affirmative action declared the use of QUOTAS to be unconstitutional.

Adarand Constructors v. Pena

Quotas and ethnicity percentage requirement for government jobs are unconsitutional

Gibbons v. Ogden

Regulating interstate commerce is a power reserved to the federal government

U.S. v. Lopez

The Court held that Congress had exceeded its commerce clause power by prohibiting guns in a school zone, and that gun prohibition was up to the states

Marbury v. Madison

Establishes the Supreme Court's power of Judicial Review

United States v. Nixon

Executive privilege does not give one the authority to hide documents.

Gitlow v. New York

First case that incorporated the First Amendment into the 14th Amendment; held that freedom of speech is a basic right that no state may deny

Miller v. California

Gave local communities the authority to determine obscenity. To qualify as obscene, speech must be considered obscene by the "average" person, depict or describe material that is against state or federal law, and lack serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value.

Wisconsin v. Yoder

Amish do not have to attend school after 8th grade - right to freedom of religion

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