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Third Amendment to the United States Constitution

Prior to the American Revolution, the British had passed acts first in 1765 and later in 1774 called Quartering Acts. Those acts required that British soldiers who were stationed in the American Colonies would be lodged in alehouses, inns and livery stables as per the 1765 Act, and even in homes of private citizens as per the 1774 Act, if the barracks housing the soldiers were inadequate and provided insufficient space. The Quartering Act of 1774 was one of those acts that were considered intolerable by the colonists and pushed the colonies toward revolution. 

After the Revolution and after the passage of the Constitution, as a part of the first ten amendments to the Constitution known as the Bill of Rights, the Third Amendment addressed this issue. It states:"No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law."Unlike the first two amendments to the Constitution which outline rights and obligations regarding freedom of speech and assembly and the right to bear arms, generally speaking, the Third Amendment is one of the least controversial. It has been rarely been litigated and as recently as 2009 no United States Supreme Court decision has used the amendment as its primary basis. Justice William O. Douglas used the amendment along with others in the Bill of Rights as a partial basis for the majority decision in Griswold v. Connecticut in 1965 which cited the amendment as implying that an individual's home should be free from agents of the state thus establishing what Justice Douglas believed was a right of privacy. It has also been cited in other cases and its attempting to justify evidence that the writers of the Constitution intended to limit executive power during wartime. Generally speaking, however, it is non-controversial and most Americans have never considered that their government would ever attempt to house members of the Armed Forces in private homes. Any action like that today would be as intolerable as it was to the early colonists who founded this country. 

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Davis & Davis Attorneys at Law

Davis & Davis Attorneys At Law