The freedoms enshrined in the Bill of Rights are examined through several high-profile stories, including that of a father of a fallen soldier who sued Westboro Baptist Church members for protesting his son's funeral; and a Rhode Island high-school student who sued to remove a prayer banner from her school auditorium. Also: the Fourth Amendment and privacy are explored with Jennifer Granick (Stanford Law School), private investigator Efrat Cohen and Twitter general counsel Alex Macgillivray.
The high ideals of the Declaration of Independence that "all men are created equal" didn't make it into the Constitution in 1787. It took three-quarters of a century, and a bloody civil war, before the Fourteenth Amendment of 1868 made equality a constitutional right and gave the federal government the power to enforce it. The far-reaching changes created by that amendment established new notions of citizenship, equal protection, due process and personal liberty. Today, those notions are being used to fight for same-sex marriage, voting rights, affirmative action and immigration reform.
The finale examines the reasons for the longevity of the Constitution. Also: forces that threaten to undermine the vision of the framers, including excessive partisanship, money in politics and gerrymandering.