Sunday, January 18, 2009

Bill of Rights

These are the amendments to the constitution. The first 10 are commonly known as the Bill of Rights. I think everyone knows without hesitation what the 1st amendment is. The rest, for me, get a bit fuzzy after, well, 2. I was very surprised to find out there were 27 amendments, the last being ratified in 1992.

Several delegates to the convention refused to sign the newly drafted constitution because it did not include a bill of rights, forcing government to recognize the rights of citizens. We are sure glad they did.

Amendment 1 – Freedom of religion and press.
Amendment 2 – Right to bear arms.
Amendment 3 – Quartering of soldiers.
Amendment 4 – Search and seizure.
Amendment 5 – Trial and punishment, compensation for takings.
Amendment 6 – Right to speedy trial, confrontation of witnesses.
Amendment 7 – Trial by jury in civil cases.
Amendment 8 – Cruel and unusual punishment.
Amendment 9 – Construction of constitution.
Amendment 10 – Powers of the states and people.
Amendment 11 – Judicial limits.
Amendment 12 – Choosing the president, vice president.
Amendment 13 – Slavery abolished.
Amendment 14 – Citizenship rights.
Amendment 15 – Race no bar to vote.
Amendment 16 – Status of income tax clarified.
Amendment 17 – Senators elected by popular vote.
Amendment 18 – Liquor abolished.
Amendment 19 – Women’s suffrage.
Amendment 20 – Presidential, congressional terms.
Amendment 21 – Amendment 18 repealed.
Amendment 22 – Presidential term limits.
Amendment 23 – Presidential vote for District of Columbia.
Amendment 24 – Poll tax barred.
Amendment 25 – Presidential disability and succession.
Amendment 26 – Voting age set to 18 years.
Amendment 27 – Limiting congressional pay increases.

The Preamble of the Constitution of the United States
We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

Now you’re a little smarter, Girlfriend — And so am I.

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