Saturday, March 25, 2017

Rights and Responsibilities: Which statements are which? Do you know?

Our Tuesday afternoon group has been exploring their rights and responsibilities as U.S. citizens. They found out that the Bill of Rights was introduced by JamesMadison (our fourth president) in 1789 and became the first 10 Amendments to the U.S. Constitution (the law of our land) in 1791. The Bill of Rights defines our rights as citizens of this nation. Since 1791, our judicial system (ending with the U.S. Supreme Court) has further explained what these rights really mean to us as we live our lives.

With the Bill of Rights in mind, we examined these common statements to determine which ones represent rights given to us by the Bill of Rights and which ones are responsibilities that we should each undertake to help our nation to remain strong.

We had some serious discussions (debates) about a few of these statements. Go ahead. See what you think. Mark each statement – right or responsibility.

1. Express yourself – write or say what you believe about topics.
2. Support and defend the Constitution.
3. Stay informed of the issues affecting your community.
4. Prompt, fair trial by jury.
5. Vote in elections for public officials.
6. Participate in the democratic process.
7. Respect and obey federal, state, and local laws.
8. Pursue “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”
9. Respect the rights, beliefs, and opinions of others.
10. Apply for federal employment requiring U.S. citizenship.
11. Participate in your local community.
12. Pay taxes honestly and on time to federal, state, and local authorities.
13. Run for elected office.
14. Serve on a jury when called.
15. Worship as you wish.
16. Defend our country, as the need arises.

How did you do?

(Answers: 1, 4, 5, 8, 10, 13, 15 are rights. The rest are responsibilities.)

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