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Patrick Henry Tea Party
18120 Southern Cross Lane
Beaverdam, VA 23015
No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a
presentment or indictment of a grand jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the
militia, when in actual service in time of war or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the
same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to
be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law;
nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.
EXPLORE THE FIFTH AMENDMENT:
The Fifth Amendment protects several individual rights: it forbids trial for a major crime except after
indictment by a grand jury; prohibits double jeopardy; forbids punishment without due process of law;
and provides that an accused person may not be compelled to testify against himself; it also prohibits
government from taking private property for public use without "just compensation."
EXPLORE THE RIGHTS OF THE ACCUSED:
In capital or especially "infamous" or notorious crimes, the government must empanel a grand jury to
decide whether there is enough evidence to charge the suspect. This protection ensures that the
government is sure of its case before proceeding, and that the collective wisdom of several individual
citizens is required to charge someone with a crime that may carry a very severe sentence. In this
way, the people ensure justice and serve a check on the power of the police and prosecutors-agents
of the executive branch.
The government cannot try a defendant for the same crime more than once (known as double
jeopardy). This ban prevents the government from using its power and financial resources to try a
suspect over and over until getting a guilty verdict. Additionally, it helps ensure justice be
encouraging the state to be sure of its case before proceeding. The government also cannot force
citizens to testify against themselves. By allowing people to refuse to answer questions that might
make them seem guilty, the Fifth Amendment resolves the conflict between defending oneself and
telling the truth.
The government may not deprive citizens of "life, liberty, or property" without due process of law.
This means that the government has to follow rules and established procedures in everything it does.
It cannot, for example, skip parts of trials, or deny citizens their rights as protected by the Bill of
Rights and by law. This protection helps to ensure justice.
EXPLORE PROPERTY RIGHTS:
The Founders knew that the right to control the fruit's of one's labor was essential to almost all other
rights. As James Madison put it in his essay Property, the term "embraces everything to which a man
may attach a value and have a right; and which leaves to everyone else the like advantage."
Therefore, there are numerous protections for private property within the Bill of Rights. Madison
concluded: "In a word, as a man is said to have a right to his property, he may be equally said to have
a property in his rights."
There are times when the government needs to acquire land for public use. It was recently re-
interpreted to permit government to take property more generally for public purposes, such as
anticipated economic development. The clause ensures that the government must pay owners "just
compensation" (usually understood to be fair market value) when it uses eminent domain to take
property for public use. The right to just compensation by government is an economic right of
citizens. This protection is part of the due process rights protected by the Fifth Amendment.
Courtesy of http://www.billofrightsday.com/read-the-bill-of-rights/fifth-amendment/property-rights/