Chapter 19: Civil Liberties: First Amendment Freedoms Section 4

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1 Chapter 19: Civil Liberties: First Amendment Freedoms Section 4

2 Objectives 1. Explain the Constitution s guarantees of assembly and petition. 2. Summarize how government can limit the time, place, and manner of assembly. 3. Compare and contrast the freedom-ofassembly issues that arise on public versus private property. 4. Explore how the Supreme Court has interpreted freedom of association. Copyright Pearson Education, Inc. Slide 2

3 Key Terms assemble: to gather with one another civil disobedience: the act of violating the law in an intentional but nonviolent way to protest a law or public policy content neutral: a requirement that allows the government to regulate assemblies based on time, place, and manner of assembly but not on the basis of what might be said right of association: the right to join with others to promote political, economic, and social causes Copyright Pearson Education, Inc. Slide 3

4 Introduction How has the Supreme Court ruled on assembly and petition cases? In general, the Court protects the right of peaceful assemblies and petitions. Governments have the right to set rules on how, when, and where assemblies can take place, including requiring permits. People do not have the right to trespass or to assemble or petition on private property. Copyright Pearson Education, Inc. Slide 4

5 Constitutional Guarantees The 1 st Amendment guarantees the right to peaceful assembly and to petition the government. The 14 th Amendment s Due Process Clause extends these rights to citizens of every state. The Constitution does not protect assemblies or petitions that endanger life, property, or public safety. Copyright Pearson Education, Inc. Slide 5

6 Examples Assemblies include public demonstrations as well as organizations such as political parties and interest groups. Petitions can include letters, lobbying, and advertisements. Peaceful marches and parades are protected forms of assembly. Copyright Pearson Education, Inc. Slide 6

7 Civil Disobedience Civil disobedience involves knowingly breaking the law in a nonviolent way to protest a law or public policy. The courts have held as a general rule that civil disobedience is not a constitutionally protected right. Those who take part in civil disobedience must accept the legal consequences of their actions. Copyright Pearson Education, Inc. Slide 7

8 Limits on Assembly Checkpoint: How has the Supreme Court limited the time, place, and manner of assembly? Governments can decide when, where, and how assemblies can take place in order to keep the public peace. Government rules must be specific and fairly administered. Government rules must also be content neutral. They cannot regulate gatherings based on what might be said. Copyright Pearson Education, Inc. Slide 8 Checkpoint Answer: The Supreme Court has upheld the right of governments at all levels to set rules restricting the time, place, and manner of assembly, but these rules must be (a) specifically worded, (b) fairly administered to everyone seeking to assemble, and [c] content neutral. 8

9 Public Demonstrations Demonstrations tend to take place in public places such as streets, sidewalks, parks, or public buildings. This can conflict with the normal use of these facilities or streets. The subject of a demonstration can also lead to public arguments. The Supreme Court thus allows governments to require advance notice and permits for demonstrations on public property. Copyright Pearson Education, Inc. Slide 9

10 Gregory v. Chicago, 1969 In 1969, a group marched from Chicago s city hall to the mayor s house to protest segregation in the city s schools. A crowd of several hundred bystanders gathered to protest against and throw objects at the marchers. The police, fearing violence, arrested the marchers for disorderly conduct when they refused to leave. The Court ruled that the violent bystanders, not the peaceful marchers, were disturbing the peace. Copyright Pearson Education, Inc. Slide 10

11 Other Court Cases Anti-abortion groups often hold demonstrations to try to discourage women from going to abortion clinics. The Supreme Court has ruled that judges and state laws may impose buffer zones limiting how close demonstrators may come to clinics. These measures fall within the government s power to limit how, when, and where assemblies take place. Copyright Pearson Education, Inc. Slide 11 NOTE TO TEACHERS: The second bullet deals with the Court rulings in Madsen v. Women s Health Services, Inc., 1994 and Hill v. Colorado,

12 Private Property People do not have the right to assemble or petition on private property without permission. No one has the absolute constitutional right to hand out leaflets or ask for petition signatures in a shopping mall. However, the courts can rule that shopping center owners should give permission for the reasonable exercise of the right to petition. Copyright Pearson Education, Inc. Slide 12 NOTE TO TEACHER: The key case on this issue is Lloyd Corporation v. Tanner,

13 Private and Public Property The right to peacefully demonstrate on public property is constitutionally guaranteed, yet demonstrations on private property are not constitutionally guaranteed. Why has the Court ruled differently on public and private property demonstrations? Copyright Pearson Education, Inc. Slide 13 Answer: Privately owned places, like shopping centers, are not places of public assembly and thus, no one has a constitutional right to do such things as hand out political leaflets or ask people to sign petitions in those places. Yet, many State constitutions encourage businesses to allow petition. In that event, there is no violation of the property owners rights.

14 Freedom of Association Checkpoint: What is the right of association? The right to join with others to promote political, economic, and social causes. It has been upheld as a constitutional right by the Supreme Court. People cannot be fired for belonging to associations and do not have to reveal them to practice law. Associations do not have to accept members if doing so would contradict the beliefs of the association. Copyright Pearson Education, Inc. Slide 14 Checkpoint Answer: The constitutional right to join with others to promote political, economic, and social causes. 14

15 Review Now that you have learned how the Supreme Court has ruled on assembly and petition cases, go back and answer the Chapter Essential Question. How can the judiciary balance individual rights with the common good? Copyright Pearson Education, Inc. Slide 15

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