Unit 2: The Bill of Rights



Unit Two Essential Questions                         
       What are the most basic rights of humanity?
       How does the government protect or limit these rights?
       What is the Bill of Rights?
       What are some controversies surrounding the Bill of Rights?
        Is my First Amendment right to free speech absolute?
        When should juveniles be tried as adults?
        Is the death penalty cruel and unusual punishment?
        Is my right to freedom of religious practice absolute?
The Bill of Rights                                              
Amendment 1

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.

Amendment 2

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.

Amendment 3

No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.

Amendment 4

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

Amendment 5

No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

Amendment 6

In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defense.

Amendment 7

In Suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury, shall be otherwise re-examined in any Court of the United States, than according to the rules of the common law.

Amendment 8

Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.

Amendment 9 

The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

Amendment 10

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

Frontline - When Kids Get Life Preview

When Should Kids be Sentenced to Life in Prison?

8 yr old murders father and friend
Abused 16 yr old murders parents
14 yr old convicted of killing

You've heard the headlines. Young people can make bad decisions, but should they be punished as if they were adults? This episode of PBS' Frontline confronts the dilemma of how society should deal with young people and their violent crimes. We will discuss this issue in class, where you can share your opinions. Click the link below to access Frontline's companion website to this episode.


Bill of Rights Scenario Game

Grab your copy of the Bill of Rights and try your hand at this scenario game. Which amendment deals with each scenario? Test your mastery of the first ten amendments! Game time...