Rights and Responsibilities
What are our rights? Who gives our rights to us? God? The Government.
The Founding Fathers intended people’s rights to be secured, they also intended people to have responsibilities to our society, government and country.
What are Rights?
What do we mean by rights? We are talking about things, conditions/circumstances that are provided to all citizens…that are commonly available to all citizens. This is one thing that sets America aside from other countries (like India with the caste system), in America the Constitution ensured opportunity for all citizens regardless of family of birth, etc.
What are Responsibilties?
What are responsibilities? These are things we are expected to do. As citizens, we are expected to take part in our Constitutional Government. The founding Fathers wanted the public to be involved to keep our Government in Check. We have the three branches of government: Executive Legislative, Judicial…the people were expected to keep an eye on each, to ensure the individual branches did not grow too large…and take us back into tyranny.
Responsibilities are duties citizens have in society.
When we discussed Internal Control (self government) (in this post) we identified this as being about to rely on our conscience to help us do what is right. We also discussed liberty and freedom. That the founders did not want us living run and free…but living in a state of liberty without Government interfering, but in the situation that we would also control ourselves…nto doing what we wanted and how we wanted that would take away from the liberty of others.
Therefore there is a limit to our freedom and liberty – it’s something that does not take away the rights/liberty of others.
The founders gave us a constitution to protect us from a government that was too powerful. The Government is there to protect our rights, not to take them away, but to maintain the right to Life, Liberty and Pursuit of Happiness – as well as the rights listed in the Bill of Rights. Rights are things that are common to all of us, but we also have to fulfill our responsibilities.
Our Founding Fathers also said that their Responsibilities are a duty – and this word, Duty is in the Dec. Of Ind.
It states that if the Government becomes too powerful, it is our DUTY to overcome that government. We should guard our liberty and make sure no one tries to take away our constitution or liberty.
Why is it important for us to have our Liberty and Constitutional rights?
For me, as a Christian, if the Government is keeping me from freedom to do what God wants me to do through taking away my rights and my property through laws and taxes for things I don’t believe in, it’s my duty and responsibility to be involved and help maintain the integrity of the Constitution.
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