Do States have to follow the Bill of Rights or is that only reserved for the Federal government? The 1st amendment says Congress cannot pass a law prohibiting free speech, however through the 14th amendment are States obligated to follow the Bill of Rights? I always thought that the State has to have its own constitution if it wanted to protect the rights of its citizens in that State.
If a State does something to violate the Constitution, such as prohibiting free speech, does the Federal government have a role in moving in and restoring it? If so, how would they do it? If Illinois decided to have a police state, is the Federal government obligated to force Illinois to restore basic rights?
The Constitution protects free speech, but what if in a public school students use slander and swear. Should that be prohibited or would that violate the 1st amendment? Is this up to the school district?
I hear that the Constitution was designed to prevent the federal government from treading on our civil liberties. But how do we prevent local governments from violating our rights? Does the Constitution extend to ALL governments?