One of the main purposes of the United States Constitution is to protect individual rights and liberties.
What is it?
One primary way that this is expressed is through the Bill of Rights. The Bill of Rights is the first 10 amendments of the Constitution written by James Madison that set limits on the power of the government so as not to infringe on the rights of citizens.
Protecting from Abuse of Government Power
We defined civil liberties earlieras the protection from the abuse of government power. These are important because they protect citizens from the government. This was an important idea for the founders because they remembered King George III’s abuse of power.
They wanted to make sure that all of the citizen’s liberties, opinions, and property was protected no matter what.
Even in today’s time, centuries after the creation of the Bill of Rights, it still holds a large amount of power.
In fact, it is used frequently in order to uphold the civil liberties in the courts. We will explain later in this study guide about the specific course cases that had to do with the Bill of Rights.