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Final

POLB30H3 Study Guide - Final Guide: Jeremy Bentham, Ernesto Miranda, Chaplinsky V. New Hampshire


Department
Political Science
Course Code
POLB30H3
Professor
Margaret Kohn
Study Guide
Final

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1. The right to remain silent (week 10)
- First key component of the Miranda rights.
- The Star Chamber; coercive interrogation. The judges had the power
to question people under oath. under oath (Law) : having made a
formal promise to tell the truth in a court of law. In the 16th and 17th
Century there was no such right, and rather there was a different
procedure of interrogation. This was very serious because people of
this time believed in hellfire and damnation. So, if one were to lie they
would go to hell. (eg: Catholics vs. Protestants. Interrogated about
their religious views. Coercive interrogations were done to suppress
religious dissent and were unpopular due to their oppressive nature.
Created psychological strain on those being interrogated, was seen as
torture. If one lies they will go to hell and if they tell the truth they
would be killed.)
- Concerns grew about the need for protection of people to prevent
them from being compelled to testify.
- Choice between death and damnation. If you speak the truth you die.
If you lie you go to hell.
- Banned in the US bill of rights after the revolution. (Which
revolution?)
- Even after these religious controversies receded the right to remain
silent was seen to be controversial.
- “Innocence never takes advantage of it.Innocence claims to the right
of speaking,as guilt invokes the privilege of silence”.- Jeremy
Bentham
- This is to say that organizing testimonies based on how relevant they
are is more valuable. Rather than collecting a lot of testimonies
because no one has the right to remain silent and then gather random
bullshit people are compelled to say which distorts the value of the
information gathered. Thus generating an unreliable legal record
because compelling someone to answer questions results in lies and
false information, because there is an incentive to do so. (being let go,
shorter sentence, community service instead of jail time) Not just to
protect criminal defendant but to produce better quality testimonies
during the trial.

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2. Coercion
- “Your money or your life”
- A will do X to B if B fails to do Y.
- A (robber) will do X (kill) B (victim) if B (victim) fails to give
- Your land (with some rights protected by treaty) or your land with no
entitlements.
- Theory of the empirical baseline: Is one’s baseline made worse if they
don’t accept the offer?
- Theory of the normative baseline: Does B have a prior obligation to
do Y? (Sometimes stated as does ‘A’ have the authority to do ‘x’)
3. Critical race theory
- Mari Matsuda is an American lawyer who wrote a book called
“Words Wound” and she talks about the critical race theory,
assaultive speech and the first ammendment. This theory entails the
following.
- Racism is pervasive and operates to disadvantage racial minorities.
- Racist speech is a significant component of racism
- Law has not adequately addressed this harm.
- There are elements of the law that could be used to restrict racist
speech.
- These legal strategies would help decrease racism and therefore we
should adopt them.
4. Group libel
- A defamatory statement that is directed against an indefinite group or
a large number of persons because of their race, colour, national or
ethnic origin, religion or sexual inclination. (Waldron, p.40)
- Libel is written defamation committed to paper. A published false
statement that is damaging to a person’s reputation.
5. Equal protection
- Three ammendements were passed in the US to secure equal treatment
of people.
- One of three amendments passed during the Reconstruction era to
abolish slavery and establish civil and legal rights for black
Americans, it would become the basis for many landmark Supreme
Court decisions over.

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- One of the ammendments is the 14th ammendment which is a
constitutional document that embodies the EQUAL PROTECTION
CLAUSE. “No state shall make or enforce any law which shall
abridge the privileges or immunities of
citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of
life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any
person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”
- It entails that no state can deny to any person within its jurisdiction
the equal protection of the laws.
- Landmark Case: Brown v. Board of Education
- This clause was the basis for the decisions made in Brown v. Board of
Education.
- SC decision was to dismantle racial segregation.
- The justices ruled unanimously that racial segregation of children in
public schools was unconstitutional.
- Significance: It showed the limitations of enforcement in court
“separate but equal”
- Black students encountered more racism because they were integrated
into public schools.
- School boards fired most black teachers on the basis that they were
unfit for teaching integrated classrooms.
- Integration of Central High Little Rock. Central HIgh had been the
only white high school in Little Rock and the only school that would
experience integration with nine carefully chosen black students.
- Brown decision radically altered elite treatment of race issues as the
focus of white moderates shifted from labor reforms to eliminate de
jure segregation.
6. Disparate impact (week 8)
- Practices that are fair in form, but discriminatory in operation. This
means laws or practices which are unintentionally harmful, as they
disproportionately impact certain groups. For instance, requiring a
college education to work in a fast-food restaurant disproportionately
affects working class and racialized people, even if that is not the
intent behind the rule.
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