Supreme Court Cases, Thematic Essay

861 Words Dec 26th, 2012 4 Pages
Thematic Essay-Supreme Court Cases The outcome of cases that have gone through the United States Supreme Court judicial branch have each had a major impact on how the laws and amendments of the United States Constitution are interpreted. Two cases in particular that expanded constitutional liberties is the case of Engel vs. Vitale (1962) and the case of Tinker vs. Des Moines School District (1969). Not only did both of these cases expand constitutional liberties in general, they more specifically, expanded rights within the school system. In the case of Engel vs. Vitale, the main topic dealt with prayer at school. The New York State board of regents composed a non-denominational prayer to be used in the state’s public schools. …show more content…
In my opinion, this court case gives freedoms to students today when it comes to religious clubs or decisions to participate in religious activities and allows students to make their own choices to determine their path in life. In the case of Tinker vs. Des Moines School District, the main topic dealt with a silent protest at school. During the winter of 1965, students organized a silent protest against the Vietnam War and wore black armbands to school. The school board learned about a possibility to this kind of protest a few days earlier and created a policy against antiwar protests. When the students wore the armbands to school they were going against the policy and were required to remove them or suspension from school would result. Five students refused and were sent home. The parents of the students appealed to the United States Supreme Court. As in the first case discussed, the issue before the court was also based on the first amendment of the Constitution. The question before the court was; “Do school officials have the right to restrict the free expression of students without first showing that such expression will disrupt the operation of the school?”. After deliberation, the court overturned the decisions of the lower courts and determined that the school board’s actions violated the first and fourteenth

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