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How many amendments have been made to the Constitution of the United States? What is the nature of the first ten amendments ?
What great and essential principles of liberty are set forth in the State constitution? What form does the Bill of Rights take in the Constitution of the United States?
Two of the twelve amendments originally proposed by Congress failed to receive the necessary ratification by three fourths of the States. As a topic for historical study, trace the history of other proposed or suggested amendments.
What is a Bill of Rights? Has the State constitution a Bill of Rights? What is the Bill of Rights in the Federal Constitution?
Which of the amendments to the Constitution of the United States echo the phrases of Magna Charta? Of the Declaration of Independence? When were the first ten amendments ratified ?
May a man lawfully carry a revolver in his pocket? Why?
Name three or four of the important guarantees to an accused person Why are so many provisions made in his behalf?
Find in the Declaration of Independence an expression complaining of nonrepresentation in Parliament.
Can you see how it came about that we have no state church ?
How many of the reasons assigned in the preamble to the Federal Constitution for establishing this Government are general and how many are special?
How are persons made secure in their homes-that is, safeguarded against unreasonable searches?
Which amendments set forth common-law rights?
What is meant by common law? By equity? By statutory law? By international law?
What is the purpose of bail? Why is it regarded as an important element of liberty ?
Discuss the topics, bail, and trial by jury.
What authority is given in the Federal Constitution for the acquisition of territory by the National Government?
What does the Federal Constitution say about punishments?
What important changes were effected by the Eleventh and Twelfth Amendments? Give the respective dates when these amendments were passed.
Which provision of the Federal Constitution prevents a citizen from suing a State without its consent?
What remedy have the people against the setting aside by the Supreme Court of any law which the people want?
What has been the uniform method of adopting amendments to the National Constitution ?
What amendments to the Federal Constitution grew out of the issues of the Civil War? State the substance of each of these amendments.
How is the ratification and consequent validity of any proposed amendment made known?
Give the main points in the recently proposed Sixteenth Amendment.
CIVICS AND HISTORY COÖRDINATED
Current Events and Historical Data.- In the study of civics much advantage arises when the subject is coördinated with history and the proper consideration of current events. Many points of interest in such matters may be gleaned from the periodicals and newspapers of the day. The discussion of these points in the class room will add much to the interest which the pupils will take in the subject of practical civics. History is made and done in an essential sense; and civics is simply history in the making. In natural science, thanks to the teachings of Agassiz, we have learned to take the actual things and phenomena as the subjects of study. Why not adopt this method in civics ? Let the bank note, the silver certificate, the gold certificate, the greenback, the metallic dollar be shown to the pupils, and the fact brought out that money is the sweat of somebody's brow; the right and title of somebody to the necessaries or to the luxuries of life,not the mere creature of the whims of those who make the bank note or the metallic token. The boy and girl are in the midst of life now—they are citizens now. By the proper study of such living topics, they may have training in citizenship rather than for citizenship. Thus they may truly take their stand for law and order in the schoolroom. Order may at first be due to outward control; but afterward it must be due largely to inward ideal and inward purpose.
The topics in this chapter are treated in a manner similar to that of the regular newspaper articles and editorials on such subjects. They are here presented not only for their intrinsic value, but also as types of the work which may be done by the student in the civic laboratory. Each article is referred to the chapter or chapters with which it is most closely connected.
The student should remember that all branches of study at some point touch the field of civics. Thus lessons in civics may be learned from Geography...
.material resources. Arithmetic...
..taxes and duties. Physiology.
preservation of health. Ethics...
..social morality. History.
.constant coördination. Current Events..
President William Taft, speaking to the students in the University of Pennsylvania, said, concerning the influence of the press: “Its power of public instruction is very great. The close relation between journalism and politics, no one who has been even in the slightest degree familiar with the course of a popular government, can ignore.”
The Right to Vote.—That the exercise of the suffrage is an obligation due to the state and to the community is a lesson that ought to be learned and taken to heart by every young American. In laying down certain requirements for voting, the constitutions have aimed at two things: first, to make citizenship responsible and serviceable, and second, to prevent the usurpation of the privileges of citizenship by unfit persons. Under the provisions of
the United States Constitution, all persons born or naturalized in the United States and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States, and of the State wherein they reside. The right to vote is determined by the State authority. The visible purpose of these provisions is to limit the ballot to responsible members of society and to keep it out of the hands of vagabonds and persons having no interest in the common welfare. Thus the possession of the right of suffrage is made an honorable distinction and affords a foundation for good government. The citizen who pays his State or county tax and registers in due time is free to vote without interruption and his legal capacity to do so marks him as a normally good member of society, conscious of his duty as such. Neglect of that duty should and does operate to the prejudice of the delinquent.
Chapter I. Rights of the Individual.—No more timely, solemn, or important utterance has been given by any jurist in recent years than that of Supreme Court Justice Gaynor of the New York State Courts, in relation to the “mugging” of the Duffy boy. In this case the police kept the photograph of the boy in the “rogues' gallery," although he had not been convicted of crime. The judge is entitled to the gratitude of all lovers of free institutions for his brave words in behalf of constitutional rights for the weak and unfortunate. In many instances, persons in authority have thus violated the rights guaranteed to the individual by the Constitution. There is no place in our system of government for an autocrat. No official, however high, is above the law. He has no right or lawful power to do anything unless the laws permit him to do it, and then only in the manner and way which the law prescribes. That is our government. The opposite is despotism: for if an official sets himself above the law, he becomes a despot in an actual manner.
Ch. I. Youth and Patriotism.–Of Lincoln's enlistment of 2,500,000 soldiers, 2,000,000 were under the age of 21, 1,000,000 under the age of 18, and 100,000 under 15. Even in those stirring times when patriotism and high resolve were at the flood, no one re