Civil Rights

Civil Rights in the United States Civil Rights Definition The rights of a citizen; the rights of an individual as a citizen; the rights due from one citizen to another, the privation of which is a civil wrong, for which redress may be sought in a civil action. Also sometimes applied to the […]


Censorship in the United States Censorship in the United States When the American colonists drafted laws before 1776, they borrowed from English precedents regarding personal rights and liberties but went far beyond Great Britain in the fields of freedom of religion, speech, press, and […]


Property in United States Property Definition

The right and interest which a man has in lands and chattels, to the exclusion of others. 6 Bin. (Pa.) 98; 4 Pet. (U. S.) 511; 17 Johns. (N. Y.) 283; 59 N. Y. 192; 31 Cal. 637; 11 East, 290, 518; 14 East, 370. The right to possess, use, […]


Citizenship in the United States Definition of Citizenship Citizenship means membership in a political community. Citizenship may pertain either to a state or to the United States or to both. Each status carries with it certain obligations of the citizen and also gives the citizen the […]


Privacy in the United States Civil Rights and Civil Liberties Civil Rights and Civil Liberties in the United States Privacy A constitutional right of privacy, drawn from the Bill of Rights provisions protecting the security of home and person, as well as freedom of association, was first […]

Religious Freedom

Religious Freedom in the United States Civil Rights and Civil Liberties in the United States: Religious Freedom Although religious freedom has not generally been curtailed in the United States, Roman Catholics, Jews, and members of such unconventional Protestant groups as the Oneida […]


Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) in the United States “We are big and vast and diverse; a nation of people with different backgrounds and beliefs, different experiences and stories, but bound by our shared ideal that no matter who you are or what you look like, how you started […]

Money Laundering

Money Laundering in the United States Definition and Introduction to Money Laundering By Steven Mark Levy, who is an attorney in Los Angeles. He is the author of Federal Money Laundering Regulation: Banking, Corporate and Securities Compliance (Aspen Publishers). Before 1970 anyone could […]

Electronic Communications

Electronic Communications in the United States Patriot Act Provisions of the Patriot Act Electronic Communications Introduction to Electronic Communications The Patriot Act expands the government's ability to eavesdrop on or to monitor electronic communications, such as telephone calls and […]


Terrorism in the United States Terrorism Definition It means the systematic use of terror especially as a means of coercion. The U.S. Army definition is as follows: the calculated use of violence or the threat of violence to attain political or religious ideological goals through […]

Criminal Trials

Criminal Trials in the United States The Rights of Defendants Much of the world’s image of U.S. criminal trials is created by Hollywood television dramas — from Perry Mason, who rarely if ever failed to win acquittal for his clients, to L.A. Law. These shows do not necessarily accurately […]

Habeas Corpus

Habeas Corpus in the United States A court order requiring the state to show cause for a person’s detention. Habeas corpus is a Latin term meaning you have the body. Habeas corpus was originally a procedure in English law designed to prevent governmental misconduct, especially the improper […]

Affirmative Action

Affirmative Action in the United States A program designed to remedy the effects of past discrimination. Affirmative Action programs are typically used in employment or educational situations and tend to offer advantage or preference to a particular group that has suffered previous […]

Right to Life

Right to Life in the United States Concepts In relation to Rights to Life, Liberty and Property, there are definitions in the American legal dictionary (see the entries) about the following topics: Naturalization Dual citizenship Right of expatriation Property rights Contract clause […]

Foreign Intelligence

Foreign Intelligence in the United States Patriot Act Provisions of the Patriot Act Foreign Intelligence Gathering Within the United States Introduction to Foreign Intelligence The Patriot Act lowers the standards that the government is required to follow to gather intelligence on the […]


Terrorists in the United States Patriot Act Provisions of the Patriot Act Material Aid to Terrorists Introduction to Terrorists Prior to the Patriot Act, U.S. law made it a criminal act to provide material support to an individual or organization that committed terrorist acts. The Patriot Act […]

Private Records

Private Records in the United States Patriot Act Provisions of the Patriot Act Private Records Introduction to Private Records The Patriot Act has two sections-section 215 and section 505-that make it easier for the government to obtain a person’s medical, library, financial, student, or […]

Civil Rights Division

Civil Rights Division in the United States The Civil Rights Division, headed by an Assistant Attorney General, was established in 1957 to secure effective Federal enforcement of civil rights. The Division is the primary institution within the Federal Government responsible for enforcing […]