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The Bill of Rights are the first ten Amendments in the Constitution, and were created for greater constitutional protections of our individual rights. These were written by James Madison, a member of the House of Representatives at the time. There were two parties at the time, the Federalists and the Anti-Federalists. The Federalists believed that they did not need a Bill of Rights because the people and states had the powers not given to the government. While the Anti-Federalists believed that it was absolutely necessary to have, and was needed to protect the individuals rights. While Madison was writing these Amendments, it was argued that Congress couldn’t change the constitution, so Madison proposed they be added on as Amendments. Madison wrote twenty amendments and of those the House approved seventeen of them. From there they were sent to the Senate where only twelve survived. Of those twelve sent to the states, only ten passed.
These amendments are a list of limits on government power. This means that a right that was seen as a natural are protected with this document The Amendments include freedom of speech, the right to bear arms, no soldier shall live in the house of a citizen without consent, the right against unreasonable searches to house, car, self, and effects; the right to not be tried of the same offense twice, the right to a quick trial by an impartial jury, the right of trial by jury of an offense over twenty dollars, no excessive bail or unreasonable punishments, the enumeration of certain rights may not be construed, and the powers not delegated nor given to the states by the Constitution are the rights of the states. These rights given to us will always be ours and nothing can take them away from us.
But why did the they choose only these amendments to ratify and use for our Bill of Rights? Each of those who voted and ratified these believed that these were unalienable rights given to us by God and therefore, shouldn’t be controlled by the government. These are right that were put on paper to prevent the government from taking over the country and trying to take our rights away. Each of these amendments protects very specific things, that as a nation we will need in order to keep the big government in check.
Let’s look at each amendment individually and see why it would be chosen. The first amendment protects our right to exercise our religion, speech, peaceful assembly, and press. This means that no matter what you believe in, you can believe it in the open and not having to fear the government is going to come after you. Next, you can say what you want where you want, though it probably isn’t the best idea all the time. You can also write in the papers, or say on the news what you believe about certain things and it won’t be taken out or edited. Last, we can gather in protest of something anywhere as long as it is a peaceful and controlled protest. This freedom allows us to keep the government in check and allows us as the people to offer changes or things we believe will help the country.
Next, our right to bear arms. This seems pretty self-explanatory, if the need arises we can protect ourselves. Whether that mean from an intruder, or an attacker, or even from the government itself. This is probably one of the most important things given to us as a people, because protecting ourselves is not an option in a lot of other places around the world.
Our third right is the right we have to our own house. A soldier can’t come and live on our house during a time of war unless given permission. This doesn’t really apply to todays world, but when it was made people attacking and fighting on American soil. So, it was only obvious that they would make one stating the privacy you have within your home.
Fourth is the right that protects us, our property, and belongings from being unreasonably searched, or without a warrant. This is very important because without it the government could just take and go through whatever they want to without a reason. This protects the right to privacy and ownership. The idea that you own something and have the ability to say no is a very good thing to have.
Our fifth right is the right we have to avoid being charged the same offense twice. If we have been accused and proven not guilty, we won’t be tried again for the same crime. It also protects our other basic rights listed above, such as the thing of one’s property. This is one that is not well known and is underestimated in it’s importance, but is a crucial part of the Bill of Rights.
Next, is the right to a speedy trial and the ability to have someone able represent them in a court of law. It also protects against people that would be trying to influence you as a witness, or someone who wants to do you harm. This protection and help in the courts is very important even now as people still try to change the minds of those involved with trials and so forth.
The seventh goes along with the previous two in a sense it involves the courts. Any crime exceeding went dollars must go through a court and have a trial. This helps prevent unjust rulings by one or another in the sense that they must be a jury to decide what happens. Since most every crime exceeds twenty dollars almost every crime is done through our legal system. This is the best way to do things because our legal system is very through and very good.
Next is our right to not have an excessive bail set for our release form jail. It must be appropriate with the crime committed, we don’t need to worry about a million dollar bail if all we did was graffiti. This is for us as a people to feel like we can still have some hope of getting out early, whether or not that’s what we need is something else entirely.
The ninth amendment protects us from having all of our other ones being misinterpreted. Some people will try to pretend they don’t know what our rights mean, or will try to violate them even if do not know they are. This will protect us from that and if one is caught misinterpreting our rights they receive and just punishment.
Our last right states that any power not delegated to the United States by the Constitution is given to the states. This prevents the government controlling everything in all the states all the time. It gives the states a right to control a more local area and it helps keep an eye on the government. With each state having its own rights they can watch and keep the government in check.
Now, of all of the amendments proposed to be in this Bill of Rights, the people chose these ten. They couldn’t have chosen better. These are the very things that, if not specifically given to us as the people and the stats themselves; that the government might want to control at a later date. This Bill of Rights is a very important part of the United States and helps keep this country free and allows it to be run by the people. Without the foresight of our early leaders and the compromise they came to in the making of this document, America might be a very different place.
I believe that this document helped shape the nation into what it is today. Without these rights given to us we couldn’t do some things that we needed to do, nor could we guarantee that we would be safe from corrupt and unlawful people and trials. With these set in place we can have protection from corrupt people, are able to watch the government, and are free to protect ourselves from more upfront threats. These give us security in our nation and knowing that we the people have the power to make this country what it is. We elect our leaders, we elect our representatives, we elect all of the people in any position of power. If they don’t do a good job we elect someone else, but it is always our choice who is in charge. That is a luxury that many nations don’t have, and we as a people have forgotten how important it truly is.
By reading this people can realize what we have in this country and how much we can really do for it. People act like they can’t do anything so why bother, or some try to change things that doesn’t need to or the have no control over. We need to go back and read what we can do, what we can’t and all work together to make this country better for all.
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