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Griswold v. Connecticut (1965)

In this personal liberty case, the court held that Connecticut could not outlaw the use of birth control by married couples. The Court explained that the right to privacy was inherent in the First, Third, Fourth, Fifth, and Ninth Amendments, and that states must honor it based on the Fourteenth Amendment’s due process clause and the doctrine of incorporation. The Bill of Rights creates “zones of privacy” into which the government cannot intrude. “The First Amendment has a penumbra where privacy is protected from governmental intrusion…while it is not expressly included in the First Amendment its existence is necessary in making the express guarantees fully meaningful.” The Court concluded that privacy within marriage was older than the Bill of Rights and was a personal zone off limits to the government.

The case touched on constitutional principles including due process, liberty, and natural rights.