Which amendments concern civil rights?


Quick Answer

The first ten amendments, comprising the Bill of Rights, define the civil rights of all male citizens of the United States. The 13th, 14th and 15th Amendments address the rights of African Americans, and the 19th Amendment grants women's suffrage.

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Full Answer

The Bill of Rights was amended to the Constitution in 1789, and according to the Bill of Rights Institute, was drafted to limit the powers the federal government had over individual citizens. The bill concerns the rights of all citizens regarding free speech, freedom of religion, freedom of assembly, the right to bear arms, protection against unwarranted search and arrest, and the right to fair trial by a jury of one's peers, amongst other protected liberties.

The 13th Amendment passed in 1865 and abolished slavery in the United States. The text of the 14th Amendment, ratified in 1868, specifies that those born or naturalized in the United States are citizens of the United States, and therefore have rights and responsibilities that no individual or state can remove. The 15th Amendment was added to the Constitution in 1870, granting black suffrage, and guaranteeing male citizens the right to vote regardless of race or previous positions of servitude.

The 19th Amendment was passed in 1920 and gives women the right to vote, stating that there would be no discrimination against voters on the basis of sex.

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