The true meaning and original intent of the Constitution of the United States of America is a hotly debated topic. Activists at each end of the spectrum, liberal and conservative, try to see the Constitution through their political perspectives.
For the past two centuries, courts and legislatures have worked to define the liberty offered to us in the Constitution — at times expanding and at times contracting. There have been many changes over time, including the addition of The Bill of Rights, the 1917 Espionage Act, and 1918 Sedition Act, and changes during the McCarthy era and beyond that gave government more and increasing power over the personal lives of American citizens. Most recently we've see further loss of rights with the 2001 Patriot Act.
All of these changes have been made with the goal of keeping America safe according to our government. How many of our personal rights do we need to give up to be safe? The Rights of the People offers an in-depth look at that question.
It walks you through a history of our rights in America from the creation of the Constitution through to modern times. You'll learn not only about history but also about the impact of religion, suppression of secrets, criminal acts, and lawyers versus the Rule of Law.
A chapter entitled "Another Country" examines the Fourth Amendment and how it has been abused in this country, specifically taking a look at how it applies to minorities and profiling. "Defending the System" examines our legal system, perjury, reasonable doubt, and short cuts that are being taken so subtly that Americans are not noticing. The book discusses warrants and search and seizure are occurring more and more often without the presence of necessary suspicion.
More recently, a number of disturbing trends are continuing to expand while eroding our personal freedoms. Issues like the dissemination of data and how it's being monitored are examined and how it impacts our rights to privacy. Consider issues like phone taps, bugs, government monitoring of private email addresses, and National Security Letters.