Bill of Rights

Quick Quiz: Which one of the twelve items below has nothing to do with a civilized society?

  1. You cannot be forced to have someone stay in your house of you don’t want them to be your guest.
  2. If you are arrested for an alleged crime, the bail that is set for you cannot be excessive.
  3. If you are charged with a crime and the case goes to court, you have the right to a trial by jury.
  4. You have the right to say whatever you want so long as it does not put another person in harm’s way.
  5. If you wish to believe in and practice a religion, you have the right to choose your religion. You also have the right to choose no religion at all.
  6. The government cannot conduct unreasonable searches and/or seizures of your personal property.
  7. You have the right to own a gun.
  8. If you are accused of a crime, you have the right to a speedy trial.
  9. The rights that are enumerated in this list are not exclusive; there are other rights retained by you and everyone else.
  10. If you are charged with a crime, you do not have to testify against yourself.
  11. The press and other media forms have the right to print what they wish, so long as it is not intentionally injurious to someone else.
  12. If you wish, you and others can peacefully gather and petition the government (or other entities) for what you consider to be grievances.

Well, if this looks like the Bill of Rights to the U.S. Constitution, that’s because it is, slightly reorganized and simplified. Here are the changes:

  1. The actual First Amendment delineates four rights that are protected (freedom of religion, of speech, of the press, to assemble and to petition the government). Four of these five get a separate listing in items above.
  2. The 10th Amendment is not included because it does not relate to any rights; it is essentially an ambiguous procedural guidepost relating to the powers of the federal government and the states.

So, if you look at those rights, remembering that their order has been scrambled, is there any one that seems to have less to do with promoting as civilized society than any of the others? If you think so, please indicate by answering the one-question quiz below.

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