The Ninth and Tenth Amendments: An Illustrated History

The Ninth and Tenth Amendments: An Illustrated History

by Robert McWhirter


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The Ninth and Tenth Amendments: An Illustrated History by Robert McWhirter

The Ninth Amendment
“The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.”

The Tenth Amendment
“The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”

The Ninth and Tenth Amendments, often disregarded, have unexpected relevance today. The Ninth Amendment, based on the idea of “pre-existing rights of nature”, addressed the fears of some Framers that a national government would threaten states’ aspirations to become independent sovereign nations. At the least it was drafted to protect “the people” from national government overreach.

While the Ninth Amendment is concerned with the people’s rights, the Tenth Amendment reserves the people’s power over government. And while we may question whether the distinction matters today, the historical record does provide a distinction between expanding rights as opposed to limiting government power. That is the story recounted here by Robert McWhirter.

Written for the interested citizen, as well as the civics student, this lively account pulls over along the way to examine some surprising, and interesting, discursions into how the events and personalities surrounding these Amendments have appeared in literature, film, sports and popular culture.

The book is part of a collection chronicling the origins, history, and interpretation, of the first ten Amendments to the Constitution – the Bill of Rights.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781945682094
Publisher: Constitution Press
Publication date: 11/28/2017
Edition description: Illustrate
Pages: 63
Product dimensions: 6.80(w) x 9.80(h) x 0.30(d)

About the Author

Robert McWhirter is an acknowledged authority on the Constitution and the Bill of Rights on which he has written and lectured widely both to academic and legal audiences as well as civic institutions. His earlier work was published by the American Bar Association. He appears regularly on Arizona Public Television’s Horizon program explaining the legality and history surrounding the challenges to, and interpretation of, the Constitution.

Robert also specializes in criminal law on which he has published widely. He presently practices as a criminal defense lawyer in Phoenix, Arizona.

Table of Contents

The Ninth Amendment
Rights, Government, and States; Declaring Our Right to Rights Naturally; Greeks and Romans on Rights and Law; Medieval Rights; Rights in English History; John Locke and the Natural Law; Locke and the Founding Generation; Taking the Ninth Amendment Personally; The Ninth Amendment: A Happy Failure

The Tenth Amendment
The Ninth and Tenth Amendments: Two Sides of the Same Coin?; A History of Rights and Powers; The Tenth Amendment and Federalism; Courts as Umpires of Federalism and Separate Powers; Slavery: A “Peculiar” Right Perfecting the Art of Hypocrisy; Bringing the South to the Cause; Fighting for the Right to Be “the People”

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