American Government Essay, Research Paper
Government is the institution through which society
makes and enforces its public policies. It is the agency through
which the state exerts its will and works to accomplish its
goals. Government consists of the machinery and the personnel by
which the state is ruled. The type of government we have in the
United States of America is a democracy.A democracy can be
defined as a system of government in which supreme authority
rests with the people. With this system of rule, the individual
has a lot of power. The 1st,4th,and 14th Amendments attempt to
uphold the sentiments of The United States Declaration of
The 1st and 14th Amendments? protections of free speech
and a free press serve two fundamentally important purposes. One
is to guarantee to each person a right to free expression- in a
spoken and the written word, and by all other means of
communication, as well. The other important purpose is to ensure
to all persons a full, wide-ranging discussion of public affairs.
This means that the 1st and 14th Amendments give all people the
right to have their say and to hear what others have to say.
Though the 1st and 14th Amendments guarantee freedom of
freedom and expression, no person has unbridled right of free
speech or free press. Many reasonable restrictions can be placed
on those rights. No person has the right to libel or slander
another. Libel is the false and malicious use of printed words;
slander is such use of spoken words. Similarly, the law prohibits
the use of obscene words, the printing and distributing of
obscene materials, and false advertising. These Amendments
protect the rights of an individual, though there are some slight
restrictions it states.
Another Amendment that attempts to uphold the
sentiments of The United States Declaration of Independence is
the 4th Amendment. This Amendment grew out of colonial practice.
It was designed to prevent the use of writs of assistance-blanket
search warrants with which British customs officials had invaded
private homes to search for smuggled goods.
The general rule laid down by the 4th Amendment says
that Police officers have no general right to search for evidence
or to seize either evidence or persons. Except in particular
circumstances, they must have a proper warrant obtained with
probable cause-that is, reasonable grounds.
The Supreme Court has often said that police need a
search warrant whenever the person targeted by the search has ?a
reasonable expectation of privacy?. The particular place is not
that important, for the Constitution ?protects people-and not
simply areas-against unreasonable searches and seizures?. The
court first made that important point in Katz v. United States,
There is a important problem posed upon the 4th
Amendment that is still being refined, the exclusionary rule. The
Problem is, if an unlawful search or seizure does occur, what use
can be made of the evidence that is found? If that ?tainted
evidence? can be used in court, then the 4th Amendment offers no
real protection to a person accused of a crime. The exclusionary
rule deals with this by stating the rule that evidence gained as
a result of an illegal act by police cannot be used against the
person from who it was seized. Once again, our government
protects us by giving us some individual rights.
In closing, the 1st, 4th and 14th amendments were made
to be exemplary of The United States Declaration of Independence
which states that ? all men are created equal, that they are
endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable Rights that
among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness.?
These three Amendments enable individuals living in the United
States to be able to live life to the ?fullest.?
Our democratic government enables individuals to start
from the same ?platform?. One may choose to take a different road
than another but out government guarantees equality and our
inalienable rights for each and every one of us.Though there are
some restrictions on our freedom it is all for our
advantage.These are the principles on which the United States
government was founded.The United States constitution attempts to
create a government based on those principles.And we succeed in
doing so,for the goal for each and every one of us is ?life,
liberty, and the pursuit of happiness? after all.