Importance Of The 14th Amendment

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Ever since the United States was founded, we have stood by certain unalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. We have preached the practices of civil liberties and civil rights around the world; however, in reality, we didn't always guarantee these prerogatives ourselves. For a little more than half of the 18th century, minorities were persecuted through unequal treatment of laws and racial discrimination. They could not find a legal haven or cornerstone to rest their cases concerning ill-treatment. In 1868, the 14th amendment was released and America’s revolution for civil rights and civil liberties began through selective incorporation. The 14th amendment is critical to advancements in civil liberties for all individuals. …show more content…
For example in the case Gitlow v. New York in 1925, the Supreme Court incorporated the first amendment’s free speech clause to state law for the first time. This allowed Gitlow, a socialist, to distribute “left-wing manifestos” which protects his free speech. The 1st amendment’s free speech is crucial to American democracy. It allows the marketplace of ideas to house thoughts and innovations, no matter how radical they are. The incorporation of the 1st amendment can only be achieved with the 14th amendment’s due process clause. However, the due process clause was not always perceived to incorporate the bill of rights. In Barron v. Baltimore, the Supreme Court decided that the just compensation clause in the 5th amendment didn’t apply to states. In a majority opinion, John Marshall stated that a narrow interpretation of the constitution dictates that the laws created in the constitution only applied to the federal government that the document had created. Over time, the words of constitutional scholars such as Justice Hugo Black and the framer, John Bingham, changed the court’s opinion and created