First Amendment and the Concept of Free Government

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The first amendment forms part of the bill of rights of America’s constitution, and it is one of the changes that have reinforced US democracy. This was to guard against government’s interference in the right of freedom of religion and expression (Smith, 2007). The freedom of expression is composed of the rights to liberty of speech, press, gathering and ability of the public formal request of the government to put right their complaints, and implied civil liberties of society and belief.

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Therefore, the framers of the constitution wanted to protect the freedom of speech of the public to promote democracy that had been struggled for by the American people. The winning of democratic freedom in 1776 called up for subsequent measures to make that were it work. The first amendment was one of the strategies directed towards ensuring that it led to its success (Haynes, 2003). This received a spectacular reinforcement from Madison who pleaded with the members of the congress not to disregard people’s preference. Instead, he advised them to do accepted thing to their wishes through principles of goodwill and moderation.

Therefore, the Supreme Court was designed to afford protection of these rights by ensuring that these rights were respected by both the federal and state government. This was inclusive of the due process clause of the 14th amendment that was designed to protect the rights in the first amendment (Stone, 2008).

This relates to the term “free government” because this first amendment consists of four dissimilar forms of freedom that form the basic freedom. This means that a free government means a free people who have the right to believe the way they want. Therefore, these freedoms provide for variant believes, for example, thought, conscience and right to outlook. It is also this freedom of belief that helps make people silhouette their future and unearth true contentment in life. This is the reason as to why the freedom of belief is the only absolute right that is beyond government’s limitation (Smith, 2007). Therefore, the term free government comes in, because, this freedom cannot be limited by the government because they lack a fair reason for that.

This freedom has at least three elements such as the freedom of speech, of press, and the freedom to demand the government to stop doing wrong at the expense of its citizens. However, the fundamental constituent of liberty to expression is the freedom of speech. This freedom permits individuals to express themselves without fearing government’s indictment (Smith, 2007). This is also emphasized by the demand of the supreme court of a proper justification of government’s actions to infringe into this freedom. However, there are limitations to this regulation where the government is allowed to prohibit some speech on the rationale of breach of peace or possible creation of violence. In addition, the level of protection afforded to this freedom of speech depended on the forum, where it varies according to place. However, there are some speeches that are less protected than others.

The right of autonomy awarded to the press is the same as that of publication. However, there is a slight difference on the media used where freedom of speech employs the use of mouth while that of press employs the use of mass media like newspapers and magazines. This means that the constitution does not afford exceptional rights to the press as compared to the general citizens (Stone, 2008). However, the Supreme Court has the responsibility of restraining the government from denying benefits to some groups depending on the composition of certain groups both in the past and the current. The right to question the governments’ wrong actions is normally through the courts and any other regime action.

This also applies to the rights afforded to freedom of assembly that allows the common citizens to organize themselves into groups to petition their grievances. This is normally directed towards soliciting of modification from government.

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List of References

Haynes, C.C. (2003). The First Amendment in schools: a guide from the First. Amendmnt Center. Alexandria. ASCD

Smith, R. (2007). First Amendment: The Right of Expression. Minneapolis, ABDO.

Stone, G.R., Seidman, L.M. and Sustein, C.R. (2008). The First Amendment. Netherlands. Aspen Publishers.

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Premium Papers. 2022. "First Amendment and the Concept of Free Government." April 30, 2022. https://premium-papers.com/first-amendment-and-the-concept-of-free-government/.

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