The Dynamic Relationship between Civil Liberties and Civil Rights


This paper will consider the relationship between civil rights and civil liberties. And present an analysis, based on facts and ···


This paper will consider the relationship between civil rights and civil liberties. And present an analysis, based on facts and figures of my own opinions regarding which of these has a greater significance in order for democracy to prevail. Many of the rights that are given to us in the constitution are actually related to one another. Having a strong impact on other related rights, and aren’t as isolated in nature as they are thought to be (Keery Abrams, Brandon Garrett, 2017).

These relationships are part of an ongoing, dynamic. And bi-directional process in which rights facilitate, complicate, and change each other’s substantive meanings (Timothy Zick, 2017). Now we will examine the relationship between the dynamic relationship between civil liberties as stated by the First Amendment’s Free Speech Clause. And the civil rights as mentioned in the Fourteenth Amendment’s Civil Rights Clause.

译文:介绍 美国民权

本文将考虑公民权利与公民自由之间的关系。 并根据我自己的观点的事实和数据提出分析,关于其中哪些对民主的盛行具有更大的意义。 宪法赋予我们的许多权利实际上是相互关联的。 对其他相关权利产生重大影响,并且本质上并不像人们认为的那样孤立(Keery Abrams、Brandon Garrett,2017 年)。

这些关系是持续、动态的一部分。 以及权利促进、复杂化和改变彼此实质性含义的双向过程(Timothy Zick,2017 年)。 现在我们将研究第一修正案的言论自由条款所述的公民自由之间的动态关系之间的关系。 以及第十四修正案的民权条款中提到的民权。

The Scope of Civil Liberties and Civil Rights

Civil rights are primarily concerned with the basic rights of equality. Based on certain characters that are protected by the constitution, which include, but are not limited to race, gender, and equality. These rights should be given to all in various settings, such as housing, employment, education. And other public facilities.

If any individual has been discriminated against on the basis of any of the aforementioned characteristics. Then it is considered to be a violation of the individual’s civil rights. Many of the civil rights laws are established. And overseen by the federal government via case law or federal legislation.

On the other hand, civil liberties are focused on the basic rights of freedom. These rights are either explicitly mentioned in the Bill of Rights. Or interpreted through one or more legislatures or courts. Some of the common civil liberties consist of freedom of speech, the right to marry, the right to vote, the right to privacy along with the right to protect one’s privacy, the right to remain silent in an interrogation, or to request for a court warrant for searching one’s premises, along with the right to a fair trial, etc.

译文:公民自由和公民权利的范围 美国民权



These two laws differentiate between the two basic rights, i.e. the right to freedom

Whether it is in terms of expression, speech, livelihood, etc., and the protection of people against discrimination. These two rights have a dynamic relationship as both can at times be in conformity with one another. Whereas, at others the two can lead to problems, in terms of violation of these respective rights. For example, freedom of speech at times, can be used to commit hate crime. And bullying against people of color, a separate race, creed, religion, belief system etc.

In its recent marriage equality decision, Obergefell v. Hodges, the Supreme Court held that. The Fourteenth Amendment protects a right of marriage equality for gays and lesbians. The opinion’s opening lines observed that the Constitution protects “a liberty that includes certain specific rights that allow persons, within a lawful realm. To define and express their identity.” (Timothy Zick, 2017) Many arguments were presented to bring forward the issue of marriage equality. And yet these had never been adequately vetted in democratic discussions.

译文:这两项法律区分了两项基本权利,即自由权 美国民权


最高法院在最近的婚姻平等判决中,Obergefell v. Hodges 认为这一点。第十四修正案保护男女同性恋者的婚姻平等权。该意见的开篇指出,宪法保护“一种自由,其中包括允许人们在合法领域内享有的某些特定权利。定义和表达他们的身份。” (Timothy Zick, 2017) 许多人提出了婚姻平等问题。然而,这些从未在民主讨论中得到充分审查。


This this scenario it was observed that the free speech clause was considered to be implicated, as it had taken many years for people to come out in the open and express how they felt. Freedom of speech was a huge factor that determined the outcome of the case, and it also helped many of the people who were hiding how they felt to come out in the open, in short, this right was the game changer, which eventually led to an amendment in the constitution.

Marriage equality is one of the most recent examples of the transformative power of freedom of expression. This right has significantly affected the mindset of the population and helped shape it into the liberal and modernistic society that it is today. Freedom of speech and other rights that are related to it.

Such as the right to communicate anonymously and the right to associate with anyone the person wishes to – protected racial equality proponents from many types of governmental censorship, and abuse. Free speech rights have also allowed proponents fighting for equality to make their case public and point out the many ways in which these rights can be advanced. (Timothy Zick, 2017)

译文:然而 美国民权


例如匿名交流的权利以及与该人希望与之交往的任何人交往的权利——保护种族平等支持者免受多种类型的政府审查和滥用。言论自由权还允许争取平等的支持者公开他们的案例,并指出可以推进这些权利的多种方式。 (蒂莫西·齐克,2017 年)

Freedom of Speech has had an immense impact on the advancement of equal protection rights.

The population stood up for each other, when realizing that there were many of those who has not been given what they truly deserved and that the society was trying to discriminate against those it was unwilling to accept. Freedom of speech has significantly help overcome language and perception barriers, and helped clear many of the misunderstandings that were prevailing in the country.

A simple way to understand the difference between civil rights and civil liberty is by asking two questions:

  1. What right is being affected?
  2. Whose right is being affected?

Considering these two questions is very important in determining which right is being effected, and whether or not civil rights can be practiced. Following is a simple example for understanding the difference. As an employee, a person does not have the right to a promotion legally, primarily because civil liberty does not guarantee getting promoted.

However, if as a female employee you are being denied a promotion while you deserve it then this is considered to be a violation of civil rights.  One cannot legally be denied the promotion based on gender, race, ethnicity, or disability. If an employer chooses or decides not to promote a female employee based on her gender, then this is an infringement of the employee’s civil rights. Such an action is considered to be an unlawful employment discrimination based on any of the reasons as mentioned previously.

译文:言论自由对促进平等保护权利产生了巨大影响 美国民权






Freedom of Speech or Protection of Ethnic, Racial, & Religious Communities

Protection of civil liberties and civil rights is perhaps the most fundamental political value in American society. “It is a fair summary of constitutional history that. The landmarks of our liberties have often been forged in cases involving not very nice people.” -Supreme Court Justice Felix Frankfurter (American Government, US History).

While both words, i.e. civil liberty, and civil rights appear in the Bill of Rights, as well as the Declaration of Independence, there isn’t a clear distinction between the two terms. Over the years, this distinction have significantly blurred, and at times the two end up violating the specific rights as laid out in the constitution. While the civil rights, protect the rights of a person from being discriminated against, the civil liberties awarded to the people may at times be misused.

For example freedom of speech or expression may be used to exploit people and infringe their civil rights by discriminating against them. Since, civil liberty give them the right to freedom of expression, the line automatically blurs where the civil rights come in and protect the rights of an individual, so that they are able to lead a normal life in the society.

译文:言论自由或保护民族、种族和宗教社区 美国民权

保护公民自由和公民权利也许是美国社会最基本的政治价值。 “这是对宪法历史的公平总结。我们自由的里程碑往往是在涉及不太友善的人的案件中伪造的。” – 最高法院法官 Felix Frankfurter(美国政府,美国历史)。




In today’s era, these two concepts are at times used interchangeably.

Civil liberties are protections against actions taken by the government. For example, the First Amendment of the Bill of Rights guarantees and ensures that the citizens have the right to practice whatever religion they please. In such scenarios and cases the government, does not have the right to interfere in an individual’s freedom of following the religion of his or her choice, or enforce who they choose to worship. Amendment I gives an individual “liberty” and safety from the actions of the government. (American Government, US History)

Civil rights, on the other hand, refer to those positive actions which the government should take to ensure equal conditions and opportunities are presented to all Americans. This means, the right to employment, the right to getting promoted, the right to a good home and lifestyle, as well as the right to a good education are protected through the civil rights law. It is often associated with the protection of minority groups, which include, and is not restricted to Hispanics, African Americans, Asians, and women.

译文:在当今时代,这两个概念有时可以互换使用 美国民权

公民自由是对政府采取的行动的保护。例如,《权利法案》第一修正案保证并确保公民有权信奉他们喜欢的任何宗教。在这种情况和情况下,政府无权干涉个人信奉他或她选择的宗教的自由,或强制执行他们选择崇拜的人。修正案 I 赋予个人不受政府行为影响的“自由”和安全。 (美国政府,美国历史)


Both of these are very important in a democratic society

And it is necessary for the two to be in conformity with the other in order to ensure that peace prevails in a society. However, as can be seen from the political situation in America, with president Trump giving hate speech every now and then and passing legislations that are at times not in favor of the civil rights as well as civil liberties of the citizens, it becomes even more important to consider which rights should be considered primary and necessary for survival.

In my opinion, it is very important to consider the importance of the two. While I do agree that civil liberties allows and protect your rights to freedom of speech, expression, and livelihood. It also at times is the primary reason for the abuse of power. In this regard, it would be better if the civil rights of an individual is given precedence over the civil liberties.

If basic needs are not satisfied, it will lead to frustration, and eventually the level of crime in America will rise. However, on the other hand, if equal opportunities are provided to the citizens. Then they will be able to work their way to the top, and ensure that their livelihood is protected while at the same time providing the necessary amenities to their families. In my opinion, America needs this more than civil liberties right now. Though I will not say that both aren’t equally important.




In my opinion

Both rights are equally important, and they need to be practiced as well. However, misuse of one may lead to inequality, therefore, these need to be practiced in moderation. While at the same time ensuring that the government is offering the services and facilities. Needed to protect the civil rights of its citizens.

Most Americans think of civil rights and liberties as principles that protect freedoms all the time. However, the truth is that rights listed in the Constitution. And the Bill of Rights are usually competing rights (American Government, US History). We need to make sure that instead of competing rights, the two rights complement each other.

Civil liberties need to be monitored, and it needs to be ensured that they are not misused and lead up to bullying or racial/ ethnic discrimination. These days it can be seen that the two rights are in violation with one another. And in my opinion, civil rights should be given priority over the civil liberties, as they ensure a better livelihood. And future for America as compared to the rights mentioned in civil liberties.

译文:在我看来 美国民权



An overwhelming majority of court decisions

based on which the American civil liberties are defined, are in actuality derived from the Bill of Rights. The initial ten amendments of the same bill were added to the Constitution in year 1791. As can be seen from the aforementioned examples, civil liberties and civil rights are at times in competition with the other. Which may at times violate one of the two rights as laid out in the constitution.

On the other hand, understanding how and when each right should be practiced is equally important for any individual residing in America. I believe that it should be up to the individual whether they consider one right to be more important or superior to the other. Or whether they support both rights, and give them equal weightage.

On the other hand, seeing the situation of the country. I still feel strongly that civil rights should be given priority over civil liberty. While liberty is definitely important.  It is also important to know which rights need to be protected more than any of the rights as laid out under the civil liberty rights.

译文:绝大多数法院判决 美国民权

美国公民自由的定义所依据的,实际上是从权利法案中衍生出来的。 1791 年,同一法案的最初十项修正案被添加到宪法中。从上述例子可以看出,公民自由和公民权利有时是相互竞争的。这有时可能违反宪法规定的两项权利之一。




To conclude I would like to re-state that civil rights protect the right to receive opportunities by the citizens of a country.  Whereas, civil liberties take this right a step further by offering the right to freedom. And in turn many rights are exercised using the notion of civil liberties. It needs to be understood that while these two concepts used to be different. They have now become quite similar and at times are even used interchangeably.

In this assignment, we were supposed to present our own analysis of the civil rights and civil liberties. And based on that give the opinion which one is better and which one do we support. Based on the many examples that have been quoted above. I have stated out clearly that in my opinion the better option is to focus on the civil rights at this stage. Before we focus on civil liberties.

After President Trump took office.  It was made quite clear that there will be many changes. And in my opinion our civil rights are being affected far more than the rights as laid out under civil liberties.

Additionally, many bills were signed which makes it difficult for people of different ethnicities and races to survive in America. Let alone call it their home. Many people were actually asked to leave. We call United States of America. The land of the people, and yet the leader we have elected is actually purporting discrimination. And abusing the power that he has been awarded by the people of this nation.

译文:结论 美国民权




Therefore, in light of recent events

I am of the opinion that it would be wiser to practice. And protect our civil rights first before we begin focusing on civil liberties. Yes, civil liberties are equally important.  But, right now, it is more important to ensure that hate crime does not increase due to discrimination. Additionally, it is also important to support that people. Who gave genuinely worked hard to make America a better place to live.

It doesn’t matter which race, gender, or minority they belong to. What matters is their desire to grow and in turn help the country prosper. This is what I believe will help the country in overcoming the problems it is currently shrouded in.  And eventually make this world a better place for the next generation.

译文:因此,鉴于最近的事件 美国民权

我认为练习会更明智。 在我们开始关注公民自由之前,首先保护我们的公民权利。 是的,公民自由同样重要。 但是,现在更重要的是确保仇恨犯罪不会因歧视而增加。 此外,支持这些人也很重要。 谁付出了真正的努力,使美国成为一个更宜居的地方。

他们属于哪个种族、性别或少数民族并不重要。 重要的是他们渴望成长,进而帮助国家繁荣。 我相信这将有助于该国克服目前所面临的问题。并最终让这个世界成为下一代更美好的地方。


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