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Before you can develop your final project, you need to be well-informed. To help you start your research, we’ve provided terms and questions for your to consider below. However, please be aware that these questions will simply help you start your research; your research should take you in new and interesting directions not listed on this paper.

Option 1: Right to a Healthy Environment

  • How is this right evident in the United States Constitution? Has the constitution already been amended to include all aspects of this right, or does it need to be amended once again?
  • This topic mainly concerns pollution of land, water, or air.
  • Consider why individuals might oppose legislation designed to ban land, water, and/or air pollution.
  • Why is this issue especially important to low-income communities and native communities?
  • What is the controversy behind this issue?
  • How are New Mexicans currently impacted by this issue?
  • Key Terms: air pollution, water pollution, land pollution, global warming, climate change, Flint Michigan, fracking, uranium mining, renewable energy, bees, mass extinctions, environmental justice

Option 2: Right to Keep and Bear Arms

  • How is this right evident in the United States Constitution? Has the constitution already been amended to include all aspects of this right, or does it need to be amended once again?
  • This topic mainly concerns the rates of mass shootings and gun-related violence in the United States.
  • What laws currently exist regarding licensure? What loopholes exist that allow individuals to legally purchase a gun – even if that individual is a convicted felon or mentally unstable?
  • Why is this such a controversial issue? What does each side want?
  • How are New Mexicans currently impacted by this issue?
  • Key Terms: NRA, lobbyists, firearm conventions, automatic vs. semi-automatic, mass shootings, Sandy Hook Elementary School, gun permits

Option 3: Right to a Quality Education

  • How is this right evident in the United States Constitution? Has the constitution already been amended to include all aspects of this right, or does it need to be amended once again?
  • This topic mainly concerns the quality of education for students of low-income families versus those of high-income families, the resources allocated to schools and to students by state and local governments, and the controversy behind standardized testing.
  • While high-stakes testing and the opt-out movement are included in this issue, what other factors might impact quality of education?
  • What is the controversy behind this issue?
  • How are New Mexicans currently impacted by this issue?
  • Key Terms: achievement gap, high stakes testing, Pearson, the correlation between socioeconomic status and educational achievement, education reform, Finland schools vs. US schools

Option 4: Women’s Rights

  • How is this right evident in the United States Constitution? Has the constitution already been amended to include all aspects of this right, or does it need to be amended once again?
  • This topic mainly concerns the rights of women compared to the rights of men, including the rights of working women, representation of women in the media, women’s reproductive rights, and the legal challenges women face after a physical assault.
  • How does the concept of feminism benefit all
  • What is the controversy behind this issue?
  • How are New Mexicans currently impacted by this issue?
  • Key Terms: right to choose, wage gap, victim-blaming, slut-shaming, sexual harassment, menenists, feminism, on-campus assault, maternity leave, public breastfeeding, sexism

Option 5: Black Lives Matter Movement and the Right to Racial Equality

  • How is this right evident in the United States Constitution? Has the constitution already been amended to include all aspects of this right, or does it need to be amended once again?
  • This topic mainly concerns the rights of black people, especially concerning police brutality and killing, racial profiling, and racial inequality in the nation’s criminal justice system.
  • What is “hashtag activism” and why is it so important to this movement?
  • What is the controversy behind this issue?
  • How are New Mexicans currently impacted by this issue?
  • Key Terms: #BlackLivesMatter, #AllLivesMatter, #BlueLivesMatter, racial profiling, white privilege, George Zimmerman and Trayvon Martin, The Civil Rights Act of 1964, racism, antagonism

Option 6: Native Americans’ Rights

  • How is this right evident in the United States Constitution? Has the constitution already been amended to include all aspects of this right, or does it need to be amended once again?
  • This topic mainly concerns the rights of Native Americans, especially concerning poverty, substance abuse, sexual assault, and access to basic human rights such as clean water and quality housing.
  • What other issues are currently affecting Native American communities in the United States?
  • What is the controversy behind this issue?
  • How are New Mexicans currently impacted by this issue?
  • Key Terms: The NFL and the Redskins, environmental justice, native traditions, the voting rights movement, education, access to basic resources

Option 7: Immigrants’ Rights

  • How is this right evident in the United States Constitution? Has the constitution already been amended to include all aspects of this right, or does it need to be amended once again?
  • This topic mainly concerns the rights of immigrants who are in the country both legally and illegally, and refugees seeking asylum.
  • What is the controversy behind this issue?
  • How are New Mexicans currently impacted by this issue?
  • Key Terms: deportation, language barriers, citizenship tests, travel visas vs. passports, racial profiling, employment, crime rates, the Immigration and Naturalization Act, vetting process for refugees, driver’s licenses to immigrants, the Real ID Act, xenophobia

Option 8: Prisoners’ Rights

  • How is this right evident in the United States Constitution? Has the constitution already been amended to include all aspects of this right, or does it need to be amended once again?
  • This topic mainly concerns the rights of prisoners in state prisons, private prisons, juvenile detention, as well as prisoners of war captured and detained overseas.
  • What is the controversy behind this issue?
  • How are New Mexicans currently impacted by this issue?
  • Key Terms: capital punishment, incarceration, penitentiary, silent system, solitary confinement, privatization, cruel and unusual punishment, right to complain about prison conditions and access to the courts, medical and mental health care, rehabilitation and reentry programs, education, job preparation, food quality, torture, prisoners of war

Option 9: LGBTQ Rights

  • How is this right evident in the United States Constitution? Has the constitution already been amended to include all aspects of this right, or does it need to be amended once again?
  • This topic mainly concerns the rights of people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer.
  • What is the controversy behind this issue?
  • How are New Mexicans currently impacted by this issue?
  • Key Terms: sexism, transgender, transsexual, bisexual, transitioning, bathrooms, Employment Discrimination Act of 2009, statistics of sexual assault, gay marriage, gay adoption, “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell,” North Carolina’s HB 2, Harvey Milk