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Civil and political rights are a class of
rights Rights are legal Law is a system of rules created and law enforcement, enforced through social or governmental institutions to regulate behavior,Robertson, ''Crimes against humanity'', 90. with its precise definition a matter of longstandi ...
that protect
individual An individual is that which exists as a distinct entity Entity may refer to: Computing * Character entity reference, replacement text for a character in HTML or XML * Entity class, a thing of interest within an entity–relationship model or d ...
s'
freedom Freedom, generally, is having the ability to act or change without constraint. Something is "free" if it can change easily and is not constrained in its present state. In philosophy and religion, it is associated with having free will and bein ...
from infringement by
government A government is the system or group of people governing an organized community, generally a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Departmen ...

government
s,
social organization In sociology Sociology is a social science Social science is the Branches of science, branch of science devoted to the study of society, societies and the Social relation, relationships among individuals within those societies. The te ...
s, and private individuals. They ensure one's entitlement to participate in the civil and political life of society and the
state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newspaper), ''The State'' (newspaper), a daily newspaper in Columbia, South Carolina, Un ...
without
discrimination Discrimination is the act of making unjustified distinctions between people based on the groups, classes, or other categories to which they belong or are perceived to belong. People may be discriminated on the basis of , , , , or , as well as ...
or repression. Civil rights include the ensuring of peoples' physical and mental integrity,
life Life is a characteristic that distinguishes physical entities A bubble of exhaled gas in water In common usage and classical mechanics, a physical object or physical body (or simply an object or body) is a collection of matter within a ...
, and
safety Safety is the state of being "safe", the condition of being protected from harm Harm is a moral A moral (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages ...

safety
; protection from discrimination on grounds such as
sex Sex is either of two divisions, typically male Male (♂) is the sex of an organism that produces the gamete known as sperm. A male gamete can fuse with a larger female gamete, or ovum, in the process of fertilization. A male cannot sexual r ...
, race,
sexual orientation Sexual orientation is an enduring pattern of or (or a combination of these) to persons of the opposite or , the same sex or gender, or to both sexes or more than one gender. These attractions are generally subsumed under , , and , while (the ...
,
national origin National origin is the nation A nation is a community of people formed on the basis of a common language, history, ethnicity, or a common culture, and, in many cases, a shared territory. A nation is more overtly political than an ethnic group; it ...
,
color Color (American English American English (AmE, AE, AmEng, USEng, en-US), sometimes called United States English or U.S. English, is the set of varieties of the English language native to the United States. Currently, American Engli ...
, age,
political affiliation A political party is an organization that coordinates candidate A candidate, or nominee, is the prospective recipient of an award or honor, or a person seeking or being considered for some kind of position; for example: * to be elected to a ...
,
ethnicity An ethnic group or ethnicity is a grouping of people who identity (social science), identify with each other on the basis of shared attributes that distinguish them from other groups. Those attributes can include common sets of traditions, ancest ...
,
social class A social class is a set of concepts in the social sciences and political theory Political philosophy is the philosophical study of government A government is the system or group of people governing an organized community, genera ...
,
religion Religion is a - of designated and practices, , s, s, , , , , or , that relates humanity to , , and elements; however, there is no scholarly consensus over what precisely constitutes a religion. Different religions may or may not contain v ...

religion
, and
disability A disability is any condition that makes it more difficult for a person to do certain activities or effectively interact with the world around them (socially or materially). These conditions, or impairments, may be cognitive Cognition () ...

disability
; and
individual rights Group rights, also known as collective rights, are rights held by a group ''wikt:qua, qua'' a group rather than by its members severally; in contrast, individual rights are rights held by Individuality, individual people; even if they are group-di ...
such as
privacy Privacy (, ) is the ability of an individual or group to seclude themselves or information about themselves, and thereby express themselves selectively. When something is private to a person, it usually means that something is inherently special ...

privacy
and the freedom of
thought In their most common sense, the terms thought and thinking refer to conscious cognitive processes that can happen independently of sensory stimulation. Their most paradigmatic forms are judging, reasoning, concept formation, problem solving, and ...
,
speech Speech is human vocal communication Communication (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, ...

speech
,
religion Religion is a - of designated and practices, , s, s, , , , , or , that relates humanity to , , and elements; however, there is no scholarly consensus over what precisely constitutes a religion. Different religions may or may not contain v ...
,
press Press commonly refers to: *Pressure, or the act of pressing *Printing press, commonly called "the press" *Print media, commonly called "the press" after the printing press Press may also refer to: People * Press (surname), a family name of English ...
,
assembly Assembly may refer to: Organisations and meetings * Deliberative assembly A deliberative assembly is a gathering of members (of any kind of collective) who use parliamentary procedure Parliamentary procedure is the body of ethics, Procedural l ...
, and
movement Movement may refer to: Common uses * Movement (clockwork), the internal mechanism of a timepiece * Motion (physics), commonly referred to as movement Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * Movement (short story), "Movement", a shor ...
. Political rights include
natural justice In English law English law is the common law List of national legal systems, legal system of England and Wales, comprising mainly English criminal law, criminal law and Civil law (common law), civil law, each branch having its own Courts o ...
(procedural fairness) in
law Law is a system A system is a group of Interaction, interacting or interrelated elements that act according to a set of rules to form a unified whole. A system, surrounded and influenced by its environment, is described by its boundari ...
, such as the
rights of the accused Criminal procedure is the adjudication process of the criminal law Criminal law is the body of law that relates to crime. It proscribes conduct perceived as threatening, harmful, or otherwise endangering to the property Property (''lat ...
, including the
right to a fair trial A trial which is observed by a judge without being partial is a fair trial. Various rights associated with a fair trial are explicitly proclaimed in Article 10 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Sixth Amendment to the United States ...
;
due process Due process is the legal requirement that the state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newspaper), ''The State'' (newspa ...
; the right to seek redress or a
legal remedy A legal remedy, also referred to as judicial relief or a judicial remedy, is the means with which a court of law A court is any person or institution, often as a government institution, with the authority to Adjudication, adjudicate legal disp ...
; and rights of
participation Participation or Participant may refer to: Politics *Participation (decision making), mechanisms for people to participate in social decisions *Civic participation, engagement by the citizens in government *e-participation, citizen participation ...
in
civil society Civil society can be understood as the "third sector" of society, distinct from government A government is the system or group of people governing an organized community, generally a State (polity), state. In the case of its broad ...
and
politics Politics (from , ) is the set of activities that are associated with Decision-making, making decisions in Social group, groups, or other forms of Power (social and political), power relations between individuals, such as the distribution of res ...

politics
such as
freedom of association Freedom of association encompasses both an individual's right to join or leave groups voluntarily, the right of the group to take collective action to pursue the interests of its members, and the right of an association to accept or decline memb ...
, the
right to assemble Janitorial workers striking in front of the MTV building in Santa Monica, California">Santa Monica Santa Monica () is a beachfront city in western Los Angeles County, California Los Angeles County, officially the County of Los Angeles, i ...
, the
right to petition The right to petition government for redress of grievances is the right Rights are law, legal, social, or ethics, ethical principles of Liberty, freedom or entitlement; that is, rights are the fundamental normative rules about what is allowed of ...
, the
right of self-defense The right of self-defense (also called, when it applies to the defense of another, alter ego defense, defense of others, defense of a third person) is the right for people to use reasonable or defensive force, for the purpose of defending on ...
, and the
right to vote Suffrage, political franchise, or simply franchise, is the right to vote in public, political elections (although the term is sometimes used for any right to vote). In some languages, and occasionally in English, the right to vote is called ac ...

right to vote
. Civil and political rights form the original and main part of international
human rights Human rights are Morality, moral principles or Norm (social), normsJames Nickel, with assistance from Thomas Pogge, M.B.E. Smith, and Leif Wenar, 13 December 2013, Stanford Encyclopedia of PhilosophyHuman Rights Retrieved 14 August 2014 for ...
. They comprise the first portion of the 1948
Universal Declaration of Human Rights The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) is an international document adopted by the United Nations General Assembly The United Nations General Assembly (UNGA or GA; french: link=no, Assemblée générale, AG) is one of the six p ...
(with
economic, social, and cultural rights Economic, social and cultural rights are Socioeconomics, socio-economic human rights, such as the right to education, right to housing, right to an adequate standard of living, right to health, victims' rights and the right to science and cultur ...
comprising the second portion). The theory of
three generations of human rights The division of human rights Human rights are moral principles or normsJames Nickel, with assistance from Thomas Pogge, M.B.E. Smith, and Leif Wenar, 13 December 2013, Stanford Encyclopedia of PhilosophyHuman Rights Retrieved 14 August 201 ...
considers this group of rights to be "first-generation rights", and the theory of
negative and positive rights Negative and positive rights are rights that oblige either inaction (''negative rights'') or action (''positive rights''). These obligations may be of either a legal or moral character. The notion of positive and negative rights may also be app ...
considers them to be generally
negative rights Negative and positive rights are rights Rights are law, legal, social, or ethics, ethical principles of Liberty, freedom or entitlement; that is, rights are the fundamental normative rules about what is allowed of people or owed to people acco ...
.


History

The phrase "civil rights" is a translation of Latin ''jus civis'' (rights of a citizen). Roman citizens could be either free (''libertas'') or servile (''servitus''), but they all had rights in law. After the
Edict of Milan The Edict of Milan ( la, Edictum Mediolanense, el, Διάταγμα τῶν Μεδιολάνων, ''Diatagma tōn Mediolanōn'') was the February 313 CE agreement to treat Christians benevolently within the Roman Empire.Frend, W. H. C. ''Th ...
in 313, these rights included the freedom of religion; however, in 380, the
Edict of Thessalonica The Edict of Thessalonica (also known as ''Cunctos populos''), issued on 27 February AD 380 by three reigning Roman emperors The Roman emperor was the ruler of the Roman Empire The Roman Empire ( la, Imperium Rōmānum ; grc-gre, Βα ...
required all subjects of the Roman Empire to profess Catholic Christianity.Fahlbusch, Erwin and Geoffrey William Bromiley, ''The encyclopedia of Christianity'', Volume 4, p. 703. Roman legal doctrine was lost during the Middle Ages, but claims of universal rights could still be made based on Christian doctrine. According to the leaders of
Kett's Rebellion Kett's Rebellion was a revolt in Norfolk Norfolk () is a rural and non-metropolitan county A county is a geographical region of a country used for administrative or other purposesChambers Dictionary The ''Chambers Dictionary'' (''TC ...
(1549), "all bond men may be made free, for God made all free with his precious blood-shedding." In the 17th century,
English common law English law is the common law In law, common law (also known as judicial precedent or judge-made law, or case law) is the body of law created by judges and similar quasi-judicial tribunals by virtue of being stated in written opinions. ''Black' ...
judge Sir
Edward Coke Sir Edward Coke ( "cook", formerly ; 1 February 1552 – 3 September 1634) was an English , judge, and politician who is considered the greatest jurist of the and eras. Born into an upper-class family, Coke was educated at , before leavin ...

Edward Coke
revived the idea of rights based on citizenship by arguing that Englishmen had historically enjoyed such rights. The
Parliament of England The Parliament of England was the legislature of the Kingdom of England from the mid 13th to 17th century. The first English Parliament was convened in 1215, with the creation and signing of the Magna Carta, which established the rights of ba ...
adopted the
English Bill of Rights The Bill of Rights 1689, also known as the Bill of Rights 1688, is a landmark Act in the constitutional law Constitutional law is a body of law which defines the role, powers, and structure of different entities within a , namely, the , the ...
in 1689. It was one of the influences drawn on by
George Mason George Mason IV (October 7, 1792) was an American planter, politician and delegate to the U.S. Constitutional Convention The Constitutional Convention (contemporarily known as the Federal Convention, the Philadelphia Convention, or the Gran ...

George Mason
and
James Madison James Madison Jr. (March 16, 1751June 28, 1836) was an American statesman, diplomat, expansionist, philosopher, and Founding Father The following list of national founding figures is a record, by country, of people who were credited wi ...

James Madison
when drafting the
Virginia Declaration of Rights The Virginia Declaration of Rights was drafted in 1776 to proclaim the inherent natural and legal rights, rights of men, including the right of revolution, right to reform or abolish "inadequate" government. It influenced a number of later doc ...
in 1776. The Virginia declaration is the direct ancestor and model for the U.S. Bill of Rights (1789). The removal by legislation of a civil right constitutes a "civil disability". In early 19th century Britain, the phrase "civil rights" most commonly referred to the issue of such legal discrimination against Catholics. In the
House of Commons The House of Commons is the name for the elected lower house A lower house is one of two chambers Chambers may refer to: Places Canada: *Chambers Township, Ontario United States: *Chambers County, Alabama *Chambers, Arizona, an unincorporat ...

House of Commons
support for civil rights was divided, with many politicians agreeing with the existing civil disabilities of Catholics. The
Roman Catholic Relief Act 1829 The Catholic Relief Act 1829, also known as the Catholic Emancipation Act 1829, was passed by the Parliament of the United Kingdom The Parliament of the United Kingdom is the of the , the and the . It alone possesses and thereby ulti ...
restored their civil rights.


Protection of rights

T. H. Marshall notes that civil rights were among the first to be recognized and codified, followed later by political rights and still later by social rights. In many countries, they are
constitutional right A constitutional right can be a prerogative or a duty, a power or a restraint of power, recognized and established by a sovereign state A sovereign state is a political entity that is represented by one centralized government that has sovereign ...
s and are included in a
bill of rights A bill of rights, sometimes called a declaration of rights or a charter of rights, is a list of the most important rights Rights are legal Law is a system of rules created and law enforcement, enforced through social or governmental ...
or similar document. They are also defined in
international human rights instruments International human rights instruments are the treaties A treaty is a formal, legally binding written agreement between actors in international law International law, also known as public international law and law of nations, is the set ...
, such as the 1948
Universal Declaration of Human Rights The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) is an international document adopted by the United Nations General Assembly The United Nations General Assembly (UNGA or GA; french: link=no, Assemblée générale, AG) is one of the six p ...
and the 1966
International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights The International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) is a multilateral treaty adopted by United Nations General Assembly Resolution 2200A (XXI) on 16 December 1966, and in force from 23 March 1976 in accordance with Article 49 of the c ...
. Civil and political rights need not be codified to be protected. However, most
democracies Democracy ( gr, δημοκρατία, ''dēmokratiā'', from ''dēmos'' 'people' and ''kratos'' 'rule') is a form of government A government is the system or group of people governing an organized community, generally a State (polit ...

democracies
worldwide do have formal written guarantees of civil and political rights. Civil rights are considered to be
natural rights Natural rights and legal rights are two types of rights. * Natural rights are those that are not dependent on the laws or customs of any particular culture or government, and so are ''universal'', ''fundamental Fundamental may refer to: * Found ...
.
Thomas Jefferson Thomas Jefferson (April 13, 1743 – July 4, 1826) was an American statesman, diplomat, lawyer, architect, philosopher, and Founding Father The following list of national founding figures is a record, by country, of people who were cr ...

Thomas Jefferson
wrote in his ''
A Summary View of the Rights of British America ''A Summary View of the Rights of British America'' was a tract written by Thomas Jefferson Thomas Jefferson (April 13, 1743 – July 4, 1826) was an American statesman, diplomat, lawyer, architect, philosopher, and Founding Father who se ...
'' that "a free people
laim Borough 25 - ''Laim'': Location in Munich Laim (Central Bavarian: ''Loam'') is a district of Munich, Germany, forming the 25th borough of the city. Inhabitants: c. 49.000 (2005) History chief magistrate Chief magistrate is a public official, executive or judicial, whose office is the highest in its class. Historically, the two different meanings of magistrate The term magistrate is used in a variety of systems of governments and laws to refer t ...
." The question of to whom civil and political rights apply is a subject of controversy. Although in many countries
citizen Citizenship is a relationship between an individual and a state to which the individual owes allegiance and in turn is entitled to its protection. Each state determines the conditions under which it will recognize persons as its citizens, and th ...

citizen
s have greater protections against infringement of rights than non-citizens, civil and political rights are generally considered to be universal rights that apply to all
person A person (plural people or persons) is a being that has certain capacities or attributes such as reason Reason is the capacity of consciously applying logic Logic is an interdisciplinary field which studies truth and reasoning Reason is ...

person
s. According to political scientist Salvador Santino F. Regilme Jr., analyzing the causes of and lack of protection from human rights abuses in the Global South should be focusing on the interactions of domestic and international factors—an important perspective that has usually been systematically neglected in the social science literature.


Other rights

Custom Custom may refer to: Sense: Customary * Convention (norm) A convention is a set of agreed, stipulated, or generally accepted standards, norms, social norms, or criteria, often taking the form of a custom. In a social context, a convention ma ...
also plays a role. Implied or
unenumerated rights Unenumerated rights are legal rights inferred from other rights that are implied by existing laws, such as in written constitutions, but are not themselves expressly coded or "enumerated" among the explicit writ of the law. Alternative terminology ...
are rights that
court A court is any person or institution, often as a government A government is the system or group of people governing an organized community, generally a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''Sta ...

court
s may find to exist even though not expressly guaranteed by written law or custom; one example is the
right to privacy The right to privacy is an element of various legal traditions to restrain governmental and private actions that threaten the privacy Privacy is the ability of an individual or group to seclude themselves or information about themselves, and ...
in the
United States The United States of America (U.S.A. or USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US) or America, is a country Continental United States, primarily located in North America. It consists of 50 U.S. state, states, a Washington, D.C., ...

United States
, and the Ninth Amendment explicitly shows that there are other rights that are also protected. The
United States Declaration of Independence The United States Declaration of Independence is the pronouncement adopted by the Second Continental Congress The Second Continental Congress was a meeting of delegates from the Thirteen Colonies in America which united in the American Re ...

United States Declaration of Independence
states that people have unalienable rights including "Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness". It is considered by some that the sole purpose of government is the protection of life, liberty and property. Some thinker have argued that the concepts of
self-ownership Self-ownership, also known as sovereignty of the individual or individual sovereignty, is the concept of property in one's own person, expressed as the moral or natural right of a person to have bodily integrity Bodily integrity is the inviolabi ...
and cognitive liberty affirm rights to choose the food one eats, the medicine one takes, the
habit one indulges
habit one indulges
.


Social movements for civil rights

Civil rights guarantee equal protection under the law. When civil and political rights are not guaranteed to all as part of equal protection of
law Law is a system A system is a group of Interaction, interacting or interrelated elements that act according to a set of rules to form a unified whole. A system, surrounded and influenced by its environment, is described by its boundari ...
s, or when such guarantees exist on paper but are not respected in practice, opposition, legal action and even
social unrest Civil disorder, also known as civil disturbance or civil unrest, is an activity arising from a mass act of civil disobedience (such as a demonstration, riot, or strike) in which the participants become hostile toward authority, and authorities in ...
may ensue. Civil rights movements in the United States gathered steam by 1848 with such documents as the Declaration of Sentiment. Consciously modeled after the
Declaration of Independence#REDIRECT Declaration of independence {{Redirect category shell, {{R from other capitalisation ...

Declaration of Independence
, the Declaration of Rights and Sentiments became the founding document of the American women's movement, and it was adopted at the Seneca Falls Convention, July 19 and 20, 1848. Worldwide, several
political movement A political movement is a collective attempt by a group of people to change government policy or social values. Political movements are usually in opposition to an element of the status quo  and are often associated with a certain ideology. So ...
s for
equality before the law Equality before the law, also known as equality under the law, equality in the eyes of the law, legal equality, or legal egalitarianism, is the principle that all people must be equally protected by the law. The principle requires a systematic rul ...
occurred between approximately 1950 and 1980. These movements had a legal and constitutional aspect, and resulted in much law-making at both national and international levels. They also had an activist side, particularly in situations where violations of rights were widespread. Movements with the proclaimed aim of securing observance of civil and political rights included: * the
civil rights movement The 1954–1968 civil rights movement in the United States The United States of America (U.S.A. or USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US) or America, is a country Continental United States, primarily located in North ...
in the United States, where rights of black citizens had been violated; * the
Northern Ireland Civil Rights Association The Northern Ireland Civil Rights Association (NICRA) was an organisation that campaigned for civil rights in Northern Ireland Northern Ireland ( ga, Tuaisceart Éireann ; Ulster Scots dialects, Ulster-Scots: ') is #Descriptions, variou ...
, formed in 1967 following failures in this province of the
United Kingdom The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Britain,Usage is mixed. The Guardian' and Telegraph' use Britain as a synonym for the United Kingdom. Some prefer to use Britain as shorth ...

United Kingdom
to respect the Roman Catholic minority's rights; and * movements in many Communist countries, such as the
Prague Spring#REDIRECT Prague Spring The Prague Spring ( cs, Pražské jaro, sk, Pražská jar) was a period of political liberalization and mass protest in the Czechoslovak Socialist Republic The Czechoslovak Socialist Republic ( Czech and sk, Česk ...
and
Charter 77 Charter 77 (''Charta 77'' in Czech Czech may refer to: * Anything from or related to the Czech Republic The Czech Republic, also known by its short-form name Czechia and formerly known as Bohemia, is a landlocked country A landl ...
in
Czechoslovakia , , yi, טשעכאסלאוואקיי, , common_name = Czechoslovakia , life_span = 1918–19391945–1992 , p1 = Austria-Hungary , image_p1 = , s1 = Czech Re ...

Czechoslovakia
and the uprisings in Hungary. Most civil rights movements relied on the technique of
civil resistance Civil resistance is political action that relies on the use of nonviolent resistance by civil groups to challenge a particular power, force, policy or regime. Civil resistance operates through appeals to the adversary, pressure and coercion: it can ...
, using
nonviolent Nonviolence is the personal practice of not causing harm to one's self and others under every condition. It may come from the belief that hurting people, animals and/or the environment is unnecessary to achieve an outcome and it may refer to a ge ...
methods to achieve their aims. In some countries, struggles for civil rights were accompanied, or followed, by
civil unrest Civil disorder, also known as civil disturbance, civil unrest, or social unrest is an activity arising from a mass act of civil disobedience Civil disobedience is the active, professed refusal of a citizenship, citizen to obey certain laws, d ...
and even armed rebellion. While civil rights movements over the last sixty years have resulted in an extension of civil and political rights, the process was long and tenuous in many countries, and many of these movements did not achieve or fully achieve their objectives.


Problems and analysis

Questions about civil and political rights have frequently emerged. For example, to what extent should the government intervene to protect individuals from infringement on their rights by other
individual An individual is that which exists as a distinct entity Entity may refer to: Computing * Character entity reference, replacement text for a character in HTML or XML * Entity class, a thing of interest within an entity–relationship model or d ...
s, or from
corporation A corporation is an organization—usually a group of people or a company—authorized by the State (polity), state to act as a single entity (a legal entity recognized by private and public law "born out of statute"; a legal person in legal ...

corporation
s—e.g., in what way should
employment discrimination Employment discrimination is a form of discrimination Discrimination is the act of making unjustified distinctions between people based on the groups, classes, or other categories to which they belong or are perceived to belong. People may be ...
in the
private sector The private sector is the part of the economy An economy (; ) is an area of the Production (economics), production, Distribution (economics), distribution and trade, as well as Consumption (economics), consumption of Goods (economics), goods an ...
be dealt with?
Political theory Political philosophy or political theory is the philosophical Philosophy (from , ) is the study of general and fundamental questions, such as those about existence Existence is the ability of an entity to interact with physical or menta ...
deals with civil and political rights.
Robert Nozick Robert Nozick (; November 16, 1938 – January 23, 2002) was an American philosopher A philosopher is someone who practices philosophy. The term ''philosopher'' comes from the grc, φιλόσοφος, , translit=philosophos, meaning 'lov ...
and
John Rawls John Bordley Rawls (; February 21, 1921 – November 24, 2002) was an American moral A moral (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was ori ...
expressed competing visions in Nozick's ''
Anarchy, State, and Utopia ''Anarchy, State, and Utopia'' is a 1974 book by the American political philosopher Robert Nozick Robert Nozick (; November 16, 1938 – January 23, 2002) was an American philosopher A philosopher is someone who practices philosophy. T ...
'' and Rawls' ''
A Theory of Justice ''A Theory of Justice'' is a 1971 work of political philosophy Political philosophy is the philosophical study of government, addressing questions about the nature, scope, and legitimacy of public agents and institutions and the relationships ...
''. Other influential authors in the area include
Wesley Newcomb HohfeldWesley Newcomb Hohfeld (9 August 1879, Oakland, California Oakland is the largest city and the county seat A county seat is an administrative center, seat of government, or capital city of a county or Parish (administrative division), civil pari ...
, and
Jean Edward Smith Jean Edward Smith (October 13, 1932 – September 1, 2019) was a biographer and the John Marshall Professor of Political Science at Marshall University. He was also professor emeritus at the University of Toronto after having served as professo ...
.


First-generation rights

First-generation rights, often called "blue" rights, deal essentially with liberty and participation in political life. They are fundamentally civil and political in nature, as well as strongly
individualistic Individualism is the moral stance, political philosophy Political philosophy is the philosophical study of government, addressing questions about the nature, scope, and legitimacy of public agents and institutions and the relationships betwe ...
: They serve negatively to protect the individual from excesses of the state. First-generation rights include, among other things,
freedom of speech in London, 1974 Freedom of speech is a principle that supports the freedom Freedom, generally, is having the ability to act or change without constraint. Something is "free" if it can change easily and is not constrained in its present state ...

freedom of speech
, the
right to a fair trial A trial which is observed by a judge without being partial is a fair trial. Various rights associated with a fair trial are explicitly proclaimed in Article 10 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Sixth Amendment to the United States ...
, (in some countries) the
right to keep and bear arms The right to keep and bear arms (often referred to as the right to bear arms) is a right for people to possess weapons (arms) for their own defense. Only a few countries recognize an individual right to keep and bear arms and protect it constit ...
,
freedom of religion Freedom of religion or religious liberty is a principle that supports the freedom of an individual or community, in public or private, to manifest religion or belief in teaching, practice, worship, and observance. It also includes the freed ...
,
freedom from discriminationThe right to freedom from discrimination is internationally recognised as a human right Human rights are Morality, moral principles or Norm (social), normsJames Nickel, with assistance from Thomas Pogge, M.B.E. Smith, and Leif Wenar, 13 Decemb ...
, and
voting rights Suffrage, political franchise, or simply franchise, is the right to vote in public, political elections (although the term is sometimes used for any right to vote Voting is a method for a group, such as a meeting or an Constituency, ele ...
. They were pioneered in the seventeenth and eighteenth-century during the
Age of Enlightenment The Age of Enlightenment (also known as the Age of Reason or simply the Enlightenment); ger, Aufklärung, "Enlightenment"; it, L'Illuminismo, "Enlightenment"; pl, Oświecenie , "Enlightenment"; pt, Iluminismo, "Enlightenment"; es, link= ...
. Political theories associated with the English, American, and French revolutions were codified in the
English Bill of Rights The Bill of Rights 1689, also known as the Bill of Rights 1688, is a landmark Act in the constitutional law Constitutional law is a body of law which defines the role, powers, and structure of different entities within a , namely, the , the ...
in 1689 (a restatement of
Rights of Englishmen The "rights of Englishmen" are the traditional rights of English subjects and later English speaking subjects of the British crown. In the 18th century, some of the colonists who objected to British rule in the thirteen British North American c ...
, some dating back to
Magna Carta (Medieval Latin for "Great Charter of Freedoms"), commonly called (also ''Magna Charta''; "Great Charter"), is a Royal charter, royal charter of rights agreed to by King John of England at Runnymede, near Windsor, Berkshire, Windsor, on ...

Magna Carta
in 1215) and more fully in the French
Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen The Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen (french: Déclaration des droits de l'homme et du citoyen de 1789, links=no), set by France's National Constituent Assembly in 1789, is a human Humans (''Homo sapiens'') are the most ...
in 1789 and the
United States Bill of Rights The United States Bill of Rights comprises the first ten list of amendments to the United States Constitution, amendments to the United States Constitution. Proposed following the often bitter 1787–88 debate over the Timeline of drafting a ...

United States Bill of Rights
in 1791. They were enshrined at the global level and given status in
international law International law, also known as public international law and law of nations, is the set of rules, norms, and standards generally recognized as binding between nation A nation is a community A community is a social unitThe term "level of anal ...
first by Articles 3 to 21 of the 1948
Universal Declaration of Human Rights The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) is an international document adopted by the United Nations General Assembly The United Nations General Assembly (UNGA or GA; french: link=no, Assemblée générale, AG) is one of the six p ...
and later in the 1966
International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights The International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) is a multilateral treaty adopted by United Nations General Assembly Resolution 2200A (XXI) on 16 December 1966, and in force from 23 March 1976 in accordance with Article 49 of the c ...
. In Europe, they were enshrined in the
European Convention on Human Rights The European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR; formally the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms) is an international convention to protect human rights and political freedoms in Europe. Drafted in 1950 by t ...
in 1953.


Civil and political rights organizations

There are current organizations that exist to protect people's civil and political rights in case they are infringed upon. The ACLU, founded in 1920, is a well known non profit organization that helps to preserve freedom of speech and work to change policy. Another organization is the NAACP, founded in 1909, which focuses on protecting the civil rights of minorities. The NRA is a civil rights group founded in 1871 that primarily focuses on protecting the right to bear arms. These organizations serve a variety of causes one being the AFL-CIO, which are America's union that represent the working-class people nationwide.


See also


References


External links


Abbott, Lewis F. Defending Liberty: The Case for a New Bill of Rights. (2019). ISR/Google Books.
*
Martin Luther King, Jr. and the Global Freedom Struggle
~ an online multimedia encyclopedia presented by the King Institute at Stanford University, includes information on over 1000 civil rights movement figures, events and organizations
Encyclopædia Britannica: Article on Civil Rights Movement

The History Channel: Civil Rights Movement

Civil Rights: Beyond Black & White
– slideshow by ''
Life magazine ''Life'' was an American magazine published weekly from 1883 to 1972, as an intermittent "special" until 1978, and as a monthly from 1978 until 2000. During its golden age from 1936 to 1972, ''Life'' was a wide-ranging weekly general interest mag ...
''
Civil rights during the Eisenhower Administration, Dwight D. Eisenhower Presidential Library
{{Authority control Human rights concepts Identity politics Rights