Background and Context
These resources will help you develop a thorough understanding of people’s Civil Rights & Individual Liberties and make connections between historical events, current conversations, and current policy proposals surrounding the issue.
Current Issue Debates
Current Issue Debates are framed by a central question and followed by historical context, an overview of both sides of the topic, and discussion questions to facilitate deliberation in the classroom.
Videos from Policy Makers
Brought to you by ASP HOMEROOM, through a collaboration between Close Up Foundation and A Starting Point, these supplemental videos are an introduction to policy areas that provide an opportunity for you to hear different perspectives directly from lawmakers.
Post | November 3, 2022
On October 31, 2022, the Supreme Court heard two cases regarding the use of race in college admissions.1 Rulings on these cases could force many universities to reshape their admissions processes.2 The History of Affirmative Action and the Supreme Court The present-day context of the term “affirmative action” grew from executive orders by Presidents John […]
Post | October 12, 2022
On October 6, three Jewish women filed a lawsuit against the state of Kentucky claiming that the state’s current abortion restrictions are vague and violate their religious freedom.1 Kentucky’s state legislature passed a series of bills in 2019 that banned abortion from fertilization, only allowing for abortion if the mother’s life is in danger. There […]
Post | October 6, 2022
On October 4, the Supreme Court heard oral argument in the case of Merrill v. Milligan. In that case, the Court is considering whether the Voting Rights Act of 1965 should apply to Alabama’s recent congressional redistricting. One section of the Voting Rights Act requires that states provide minority voters with “an equal opportunity to […]
Post | May 26, 2022
On Saturday, May 14, a gunman killed 10 people and wounded three others in a supermarket serving a predominantly Black population in eastern Buffalo, New York. The shooter, an 18-year-old white man, traveled over 200 miles to the Tops Supermarket.1 He was the apparent author of an online screed that claims the attack was meant […]
Post | March 16, 2022
On February 22, Texas Governor Greg Abbott ordered the state Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) to investigate gender-affirming medical care provided to transgender youth as child abuse, requiring mandated reporters (such as teachers, doctors, and health care workers) to pass on that information to the DFPS.1 Gender-affirming medical care for youth typically includes […]
Post | February 23, 2022
The National Football League (NFL) is in the hot seat again. This time, players and coaches are accusing the league of racial discrimination in hiring practices for coaches; more specifically, they claim that the NFL is biased against Black personnel for coveted coaching positions. In a sports league where most players are Black, most head […]
Videos | December 16, 2021
During this #CloseUpConversations webinar, sponsored by Johnson and Johnson, we discuss internships and career pathways that drive policy-making on Capitol Hill.