Institutions of Government and Civil Liberties
Civil liberties are protections of rights from the government. These liberties include freedom of speech, freedom of religion, etc. These liberties are granted to us by the Constitution and cannot be violated by the government in some certain circumstances. The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) is an organization devoted to ensuring the protection of American's civil liberties. Mapp v. Ohio and Engle v. Vitale (1961 and 1962) involved the ACLU. Mapp involved a woman who's home was searched by police for illegal gambling activities. Instead they found obscene magazines and arrested her for possessing them. The Supreme Court ruled that this seizure was unlawful and this established the "plain sight" rule for police officers. Engle involved a woman who brought the issue of prayer in public school to court, claiming that it violated her son's constitutional right to separation of church and state. The Supreme Court ruled in favor of her and public school prayer was taken out.