Protecting Individual Rights
Activity 2 Formative Assessment: Scoring Guide

Clarence E. Gideon was the appellant in the case Gideon v. Wainwright who, during his first trial for breaking and entering, was denied the Right to Counsel. Gideon was poor and could not afford his own lawyer, however the judge stated that the court would only appoint a lawyer for those who couldnít afford one and who were charged with murder. It wasnít fair because Due Process rights apply to every person, which means that being poor does not mean you lose your right to counsel when you are faced with a possible prison sentence.

Gideonís rights were being violated. He had the Right to Appeal and he used it. The Supreme Court of the United States has the final say about Constitutional rights. Through judicial review, the Supreme Court of the United States reversed the decision of two Florida courts and decided that Gideon had a right to counsel. Before this decision, the right to counsel for those who were, like Gideon, poor and facing prison sentences was not upheld except in murder cases. Because of Gideonís appeal, everyoneís Due Process right to counsel is protected. This case shows how through judicial review the appeals process protects our Due Process rights.