First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, which protects political speech.

disc1 lorena:


Separation of powers is that the three branches of government are separated: Legislature, Executive, and Judicial Branch. The legislative makes the laws, the Executive is the part that carries out the laws and the Judicial Branch is the courts that decide if the law has been broken. The Separation of Powers is also called a system of Checks and Balances meaning that the branches can check up on each other and balance each other if the branches get too strong. Separation of powers was “designed to elevated the concerns of the public and allow it to guard against the false exercise of government power” (Ivers, 2013, 1.2).

The interaction between the Separation of Powers and the other three Pillars is that it places the power to veto Legislation in the hands of the president, but Congress has the power to override presidential vetoes with the support of two-thirds majorities of each chamber. Another interaction between pillars is Congress has the power to declare war, but the president is made Commander in chief of the armed forces (Ivers, 2013, 1.2).

Real world examples of how Separation of Powers supports the democratic system of government is when Barack Obama had to resign as Senator of Illinois in order to take the office as U.S. President. The Constitution states that no member of Congress, may serve in another branch of federal government at the same time. The separation of powers prevents the abuse of power and to safeguard freedom for all. No one branch can become so powerful in a democracy as to destroy the system.


disc1 rodney

One of the four pillars of the United States government is the Separation of Powers, it was decided that if all power of the government was place in one place it would end up being no different in the United States, then when it was under the rule of England, is was summed up by James Madison conceded the point that the “accumulation” of all legislative, executive, and judicial power in a single branch of government could; justly be pronounced the very definition of tyranny”(Ivers, 2013). While the president has the power to veto laws that have been passed by the legislative branch, they also have the power of executive orders to create laws they feel should be enacted but cannot get them through the legislative process. The sad thing here is that the president has the power to alter our past history, by changing the names of mountain ranges, basically on a whim, because they can.


disc2 lorena



One recent example of judicial review by the Supreme Court was the Ladue V. Gilleo, 1994 case. Margaret Gilleo placed a sign in her yard in Ladue, Missouri saying “Say no to war in the Persian Gulf, call Congress now.” Ms. Gilleo sued the city of Ladue for violating her First Amendment rights after the city of Ladue told Ms. Gilleo to take her signs down because it had a law against yard signs.

The reviews are considered examples of judicial activism because the U. S. Supreme Court acknowledged the rule of personnel or political view such as that of the law to ban signs in Ladue. The Supreme Court acknowledged the decision of the lower courts since Ladue’s law against yard signs violated the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, which protects political speech.  Forbidding yard signs is the contrary of expressing personal political views. This concluded that the value of protecting personal political speech is more important that banning yard signs.


dic2 rodney

udicial review is the process in which the court system take a case and consider if it is “ripe” for the court to hear, in most cases all administrative remedies must be exhausted, which would be all lower courts and that a Constitutional challenge is being raised. The court can consider if the case is moot, or if it has relevance to be heard which would make the case ripe for review.

To define “judicial activism”, using plain language and simple application to the words would be; using the position of the court to advance a cause, rendering a decision that would be the exact opposite of “judicial restraint”, making or deciding a case with a narrowly worded opinion that does not go beyond the duties of the court to the point of being a possible activist for a cause.

Same sex marriage is the most recent example of judicial activism, I understand equal protection under the law, but I also, understand the democratic process, if the voters of those states in which these case originated took to the polls and left the decision up to the voters, and this being what the democratic process is (or at least I thought it was) got a slap in the face with this decision. Whether I agree with it or not is not the point here, it is the erosion of the democratic process and the will of the people

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