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Word Count: 318
Incorporation is the process by which the Supreme Court applied the due process clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to extend the protections of the Bill of Rights against state interference The Bill of Rights was originally intended to limit the powers of the federal government in order to protect the rights of the people and the states However it did not protect the rights of the individuals from state or local governments The Fourteenth Amendment provided a basis for removing this limitation by specifically prohibiting the states from violating a persons right to life liberty and property without due process of law In a sense incorporation turned the original intent of the Bill of Rights upside down In addition to limiting the powers of the federal government in order to protect state and local rights the incorporation of most of the Bill of Rights in the Fourteenth Amendment became a means by which the federal government prevented state and local governments from violating individual rights When the Bill of Rights only limited the power of the federal government it was of almost no importance in protecting the rights of individuals When the great change came and the Supreme Court applied the protections of the Bill of Rights to the states through the due process clause it was an effort to achieve the fundamental purpose of the Constitution protecting the rights of the American citizens That is why some scholars believe incorporation is an important part of our constitutional system because it achieved the fundamental purpose of the Constitution If incorporation did not exist the states could make laws that violated any and all rights of the citizens They would not have to abide by the laws of the federal government and they could make any laws striking down the ones purposed or passed by Congress Society would return to the way it was when incorporation did not exist
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