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24 terms

Chapter 4: Civil Liberties and Civil Rights

Vocabulary for Chapter 4
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Civil Liberties
The protections of citizens from improper governmental actions.
Civil Rights
The legal or moral claims that citizens are entitled to make on the government.
Miranda Rule
The convention derived from the Supreme Court's 1966 ruling in the case of Miranda v. Arizona where by persons under arrest must be informed of their legal rights, including their right to counsel, before undergoing police interrogation.
Establishment Clause
Clause in the First Amendment that says the government may not establish an official religion. Also separates church and state.
Lemon Test
Arose from the Lemon v. Kurtzman case in which any funds given to religious school cannot be used for religious purposes.
Free Exercise Clause
The First Amendment guarantee that citizens may freely engage in the religious activities of their choice
Strict Scrutiny
Used by the Supreme Court in racial discrimination cases and other cases involving civil liberties and civil rights, which places the burden of proof on the government rather than on the challengers to show that the law in question is constitutional
Clear and Present Danger
Phrase used in the Supreme Court decision, Schenck v. United States (1919). It refers to the idea that the government has the right to punish individuals who engage in speech or actions which can be shown to present a serious and immediate danger to the nation or the interests of the government. Schenck had been convicted for having distributed leaflets urging people not to register for the draft during World War I. Although such "speech" would have been within his rights in peacetime, the Supreme Court ruled that the fact that he engaged in that activity in a time of war made his actions pose a "clear and present danger" to the nation.
Speech Plus
In Johnson v. Texas (1989), the Supreme Court ruled that burning the flag in a manner that does not pose a threat to people or property is allowed as this type of freedom of speech.
Prior Restraint
Censorship imposed on a speech before it published in a newspaper; usually unconstitutional
Libel
Written statement that is made in disregard of the truth that causes damages to a victim because it is malicious, scandalous, and defamatory.
Slander
Spoken statement that is made in disregard of the truth that causes damages to a victim because it is malicious, scandalous, and defamatory.
Fighting words
Speech that directly incites damaging conduct.
Exclusionary Rule
The rule that evidence, no matter how incriminating, cannot be introduced into a trial if it was not constitutionally obtained. The rule prohibits use of evidence obtained through unreasonable search and seizure.
Grand Jury
A jury that see the evidence in a case to see if there is enough to conduct a trial. They do not decide innocence or guilt.
Double Jeopardy
5th amendment right banning the trying of someone for the same crime twice.
Eminent domain
The right of government to take private property for public use
Right to Privacy
The right to a private personal life free from the intrusion of government.
Equal Protection Clause
14th amendment clause that prohibits states from denying equal protection under the law, and has been used to combat discrimination
"Separate but Equal" rule
The doctrine that public accommodations could be segregated by race but still equal; Court Case of Plessy vs Ferguson
de jure segregation
Segregation imposed by law.
de facto segregation
Segregation resulting from economic or social conditions or personal choice.
Intermediate Scrutiny
A legal test falling between ordinary and strict scrutiny relevant to issues of gender; under this test, the Supreme Court will allow gender classifications in laws if they are substantially related to an important government objective
Affirmative Action
A policy designed to redress past discrimination against women and minority groups through measures to improve their economic and educational opportunities