Be a Hero for a Better World ... Every Act of Kindness Makes a Difference!
   

CIVIL RIGHTS

Among the natural rights of the colonists are these: first, a right to life; secondly, to liberty; thirdly to property; together with the right to support and defend them in the best manner they can.
-- Samuel Adams

 

The USA was founded in the name of democracy, equality and individual freedom, but is failing to deliver the fundamental promise of protecting rights for all.
-- Amnesty International

* "It was we, the people; not we, the white male citizens; nor yet we, the male citizens; but we, the whole people, who formed the Union... Men, their rights and nothing more; women, their rights and nothing less."
-- Susan B. Anthony

* So long as we have enough people in this country willing to fight for their rights, we'll be called a democracy.
-- Roger Nash Baldwin

Thought that is silenced is always rebellious. Majorities, of course, are often mistaken. This is why the silencing of minorities is necessarily dangerous. Criticism and dissent are the indispensable antidote to major delusions.
-- Alan Barth

Sometimes the law defends plunder and participates in it. Thus the beneficiaries are spared the shame and danger that their acts would otherwise involve... But how is this legal plunder to be identified? Quite simply. See if the law takes from some persons what belongs to them and gives it to the other persons to whom it doesn't belong. See if the law benefits one citizen at the expense of another by doing what the citizen himself cannot do without committing a crime. Then abolish that law without delay ... No legal plunder; this is the principle of justice, peace, order, stability, harmony and logic.
-- Frederic Bastiat

The [Supreme] Court during the past decade let police obtain search warrants on the strength of anonymous tips. It did away with the need for warrants when police want to search luggage, trash cans, car interiors, bus passengers, fenced private property and barns.
-- Dan Baum

* "Through electing officials that will protect the Constitution and commit themselves to the rights of the people and the health of the nation, we will be able to ensure that no group of ideologues and no private sector institution can coopt our rights, take us into senseless wars and steal the nation from its people."
-- Harry Belafonte

 

"Civil Rights opened the windows. When you open the windows, it does not mean that everybody will get through. We must create our own opportunities."
-- Mary Frances Berry (American Writer, b.1938)

An unconditional right to say what one pleases about public affairs is what I consider to be the minimum guarantee of the First Amendment.
-- Justice Hugo L. Black

"The civil rights movement didn't begin in Montgomery and it didn't end in the 1960s. It continues on to this very minute."
-- Julian Bond

At the foundation of our civil liberties lies the principle that denies to government officials an exceptional position before the law and which subjects them to the same rules of conduct that are commands to the citizen.
-- Justice Louis D. Brandeis

The Framers of the Bill of Rights did not purport to "create" rights.  Rather, they designed the Bill of Rights to prohibit our Government from infringing rights and liberties presumed to be preexisting. 
-- Justice William J. Brennan

The people never give up their liberties but under some delusion.
-- Edmund Burke

Democracy is not the law of the majority but the protection of the minority.
-- Albert Camus

Every advance in this half-century-Social Security, civil rights, Medicare, aid to education, one after another-came with the support and leadership of American Labor.
~ Jimmy Carter

* If we don’t believe in freedom of expression for people we despise, we don’t believe in it at all.
-- Noam Chomsky

“Old or young, healthy as a horse or a person with a disability that hasn't kept you down, man or woman, Native American, native born, immigrant, straight or gay -- whatever; the test ought to be I believe in the Constitution, the Bill of Rights and the Declaration of Independence. I believe in religious liberty. I believe in freedom of speech. I believe in working hard and playing by the rules. I'm showing up for work tomorrow. I'm building that bridge to the 21st century. That ought to be the test.”
~ Bill Clinton

* "I thought it was a good time to have those debates again about government using fear to erode away civil liberties, which happens every 30 to 40 years"
-- George Clooney

The Patriot Act is certainly a concern; all of those things are dangerous. I think more important than me preaching is that we as a nation have to have the debate. I don't know what the answers are. I just know that if the idea is to say talking about it makes you unpatriotic, I've got to call your bluff on that.
-- George Clooney

* A people who extend civil liberties only to preferred groups start down the path either to dictatorship of the right or the left.
-- Justice William O. Douglas

Restriction of free thought and free speech is the most dangerous of all subversions. It is the one un-American act that could most easily defeat us.
-- Justice William O. Douglas

The privacy and dignity of our citizens [are] being whittled away by sometimes imperceptible steps. Taken individually, each step may be of little consequence. But when viewed as a whole, there begins to emerge a society quite unlike any we have seen -- a society in which government may intrude into the secret regions of a [person’s] life.
-- Justice William O. Douglas

The Constitution is not neutral. It was designed to take the government off the backs of people.
-- Justice William O. Douglas

* Liberty is meaningless where the right to utter one’s thoughts and opinions has ceased to exist. That, of all rights, is the dread of tyrants. It is the right which they first of all strike down.
-- Frederick Douglass

* They [the founders] proclaimed to all the world the revolutionary doctrine of the divine rights of the common man. That doctrine has ever since been the heart of the American faith.
-- Dwight D. Eisenhower

The right to freedom of expression is justified first of all as the right of an individual purely in his capacity as an individual. It derives from the widely accepted premise of Western thought that the proper end of man is the realization of his character and potentialities as a human being.
-- Thomas I. Emerson

* They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.
-- Benjamin Franklin

The whole of the Bill [of Rights] is a declaration of the right of the people at large or considered as individuals... It establishes some rights of the individual as unalienable and which consequently, no majority has a right to deprive them of.
-- Albert Gallatin

* “Rights that do not flow from duty well performed are not worth having.”
-- Mohandas K. Gandhi

 

Civil liberties victories never stay won, but must be fought for over and over again.
-- Ira Glasser

Make men wise, and by that very operation you make them free. Civil liberty follows as a consequence of this; no usurped power can stand against the artillery of opinion.
-- William Godwin

The greatest right of a civilized person is to be left alone, unless he does harm to others or is threatening to do harm to himself.
-- Justice Arthur Joseph Goldberg

I am the inferior of any man whose rights I trample underfoot.
-- Horace Greeley

"With every civil right there has to be a corresponding civil obligation."
-- Edison Haines

In a free government, the security for civil rights must be the same as that for religious rights. It consists in the one case in the multiplicity of interests, and in the other in the multiplicity of sects.
-- Alexander Hamilton

* "There is no contradiction between effective law enforcement and respect for civil and human rights."
-- Dorothy Height

* None of us would trade freedom of expression for the narrowness of the public censor. America is a free market for people who have something to say, and need not fear to say it.
-- Hubert Humphrey

* Give to every human being every right that you claim for yourself. 
~ Robert G. Ingersoll

The first thing to learn in intercourse with others is non-interference with their own particular ways of being happy, provided those ways do not assume to interfere by violence with ours.
-- William James

* "A Bill of Rights is what the people are entitled to against every government, and what no just government should refuse, or rest on inference."
-- Thomas Jefferson

Bear in mind this sacred principle, that though the will of the majority is in all cases to prevail, that will to be rightful must be reasonable; that the minority possess their equal rights, which equal law must protect, and to violate would be oppression.
-- Thomas Jefferson

"The best principles of our republic secure to all its citizens a perfect equality of rights."
-- Thomas Jefferson

By a declaration of rights, I mean one which shall stipulate freedom of religion, freedom of the press, freedom of commerce against monopolies, trial by juries in all cases, no suspensions of the habeas corpus, no standing armies. These are fetters against doing evil which no honest government should decline.
-- Thomas Jefferson

Whenever the people are well informed, they can be trusted with their own government; that whenever things get so far wrong as to attract their notice, they may be relied on to set them to rights.
-- Thomas Jefferson

I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it.
-- Thomas Jefferson

* If we make peaceful revolution impossible, we make violent revolution inevitiable.
-- John F. Kennedy

“In giving rights to others which belong to them, we give rights to ourselves and to our country”
-- John F. Kennedy

I believe in an America where the separation of church and state is absolute -- where no Catholic prelate would tell the president (should he be Catholic) how to act, and no Protestant minister would tell his parishoners for whom to vote -- where no church or church school is granted any public funds or political preference -- and where no man is denied public office merely because his religion differs from the president who might appoint him or the people who might elect him.
-- John F. Kennedy

* The enlargement of liberty for individual human beings must be the supreme goal and abiding practice of any western society.
-- Robert F. Kennedy

* "Whatever career you may choose for yourself - doctor, lawyer, teacher - let me propose an avocation to be pursued along with it. Become a dedicated fighter for civil rights. Make it a central part of your life. It will make you a better doctor, a better lawyer, a better teacher. It will enrich your spirit as nothing else possibly can. It will give you that rare sense of nobility that can only spring from love and selflessly helping your fellow man. Make a career of humanity. Commit yourself to the noble struggle for human rights. You will make a greater person of yourself, a greater nation of your country and a finer world to live in."
-- Martin Luther King, Jr.

"When the government violates the people's rights, insurrection is, for the people and for each portion of the people, the most sacred of the rights and the most indispensible of duties."
-- Marquis De Lafayette

It is easy to think the State has a lot of different objects -- military, political, economic, and what not. But in a way things are much simpler than that. The State exists simply to promote and to protect the ordinary happiness of human beings in this life. A husband and wife chatting over a fire, a couple of friends having a game of darts in a pub, a man reading a book in his own room or digging in his own garden -- that is what the State is there for. And unless they are helping to increase and prolong and protect such moments, all the laws, parliaments, armies, courts, police, economics, etc., are simply a waste of time.
-- C. S. Lewis

* "The Cause of civil liberty must not be surrendered at the end of one, or even one hundred defeats."
-- Abraham Lincoln

* “Don't interfere with anything in the Constitution. That must be maintained, for it is the only safeguard of our liberties.”
-- Abraham Lincoln

To sin by silence when they should protest makes cowards of men.”
-- Abraham Lincoln


facebook.com/AlterNetNews

* I believe there are more instances of the abridgment of the freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments of those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations.
-- James Madison

* Get up, stand up, stand up for your rights”
-- Bob Marley

* If the 1st Amendment means anything, it means that a state has no business telling a man, sitting alone in his own house, what books he may read or what films he may watch.
-- Thurgood Marshall

* All men are by nature born equally free and independent.
-- George Mason

We came equals into this world, and equals shall we go out of it.
-- George Mason

* Every society, all government, and every kind of civil compact therefore, is or ought to be, calculated for the general good and safety of the community.
-- George Mason

* If all mankind minus one were of one opinion, mankind would be no more justified in silencing that one person than he, if he had the power, would be justified in silencing mankind.
-- John Stuart Mill

Of the liberty of conscience in matters of religious faith, of speech and of the press; of the trial by jury of the vicinage in civil and criminal cases; of the benefit of the writ of habeas corpus; of the right to keep and bear arms.... If these rights are well defined, and secured against encroachment, it is impossible that government should ever degenerate into tyranny.
-- James Monroe

The busybodies have begun to infect American society with a nasty intolerance -- a zeal to police the private lives of others and hammer them into standard forms -- A Nation of Finger Pointers.
-- Lance Morrow

Fascism should rightly be called Corporatism as it is a merge of state and corporate power.
-- Benito Mussolini

* The only way to make sure people you agree with can speak is to support the rights of people you don't agree with.
-- Eleanor Holmes Norton

* We need not throw away 200 years of American jurisprudence while we fight terrorism. We need not choose between our most deeply held values, and keeping this nation safe.
-- Barack Obama

* For all men being originally equals, no one by birth could have a right to set up his own family in perpetual preference to all others for ever.
-- Thomas Paine

* I knew someone had to take the first step and I made up my mind not to move.
-- Rosa Parks

All of us can think of a book... that we hope none of our children or any other children have taken off the shelf. But if I have the right to remove that book from the shelf -- that book I abhor -- then you also have exactly the same right and so does everyone else. And then we have no books left on the shelf for any of us.
-- Katherine Patterson

Demanding domestic security in times of war invites carelessness in preserving civil liberties and the right of privacy. Frequently the people are only too anxious for their freedoms to be sacrificed on the altar of authoritarianism thought to be necessary to remain safe and secure.
-- US Representative Ron Paul

* Governments exist to protect the rights of minorities. The loved and the rich need no protection: they have many friends and few enemies.
-- Wendell Phillips

In the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (December 1948) in most solemn form, the dignity of a person is acknowledged to all human beings; and as a consequence there is proclaimed, as a fundamental right, the right of free movement in search for truth and in the attainment of moral good and of justice, and also the right to a dignified life. 
-- Pope John XXIII, 1881-1963 Pacem in Terris, 1963

Power always has to be kept in check; power exercised in secret, especially under the cloak of national security, is doubly dangerous.
-- William Proxmire

* "A community is democratic only when the humblest and weakest person can enjoy the highest civil, economic, and social rights that the biggest and most powerful possess."
-- A. Philip Randolph

* Those who have long enjoyed such privileges as we enjoy, forget in time that men have died to win them.
-- Franklin D. Roosevelt

* No man is above the law and no man below it. 
-- Theodore Roosevelt

* In every country, we should be teaching our children the scientific method and the reasons for a Bill of Rights. With it comes a certain decency, humility and community spirit. In the demon-haunted world that we inhabit by virtue of being human, this may be all that stands between us and the enveloping darkness.
-- Carl Sagan

“I also wish that the Pledge of Allegiance were directed at the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, as it is when the President takes his oath of office, rather than to the flag and the nation”
-- Carl Sagan

The 'strength' of the People becomes weak when we don't 'exercise' our rights.
-- Eric Schaub

"From the equality of rights springs identity of our highest interests; you cannot subvert your neighbor's rights without striking a dangerous blow at your own."
-- Carl Schurz

As global citizens, it is our responsibility to become active participants in our democracy, and to make sure that everyone's civil rights are protected.
-- Robert Alan Silverstein

We must remember that a right lost to one is lost to all.
-- William Reece Smith, Jr

Constitutional rights may not be infringed simply because the majority of the people choose that they be.
-- Supreme Court of the United States

* There will never be a really free and enlightened State until the State comes to recognize the individual as a higher and independent power, from which all its own power and authority are derived, and treats him accordingly.
-- Henry David Thoreau

"Every segment of our population, and every individual, has a right to expect from his government a fair deal."
-- Harry S. Truman

The tyranny of the many would be when one body takes over the rights of others, and then exercises its power to change the laws in its favor.
-- Voltaire

I may not agree with what you say, but to your death I will defend your right to say it.
-- Voltaire

* The constitution does not provide for first and second class citizens.
-- Wendell Wilkie

* "Slowly we have lifeted ourselves by our own bootstraps. Step by halting step, we have beat our way back."
~Roy Wilkins

* An enormous discrepancy exists between the way we talk about equality in the abstract and the value as translated into laws and justice.”
~Roy Wilkins

If you mind your own business, you won't be minding mine.
-- Hank Williams

I am where I am because of the bridges that I crossed. Sojourner Truth was a bridge. Harriet Tubman was a bridge. Ida B. Wells was a bridge. Madame C. J. Walker was a bridge. Fannie Lou Hamer was a bridge.
-- Oprah Winfrey

Civil Rights Day - August 12
Citizenship Day - September 17
Bill Of Rights Day - December 15
Human Rights Day - December 10

See also HUMAN RIGHTS Quotes


 

 

PRINT FREE
Bill of Rights Day PDFs
Bill of Rights PDFs

 

no celebrity endorsement implied


Read

The BETTER
WORLD BOOK

... join the betterworld
movement...

FREE online

Read
Shift of Heart
Paths to Healing and Love
by Cheryl Melody Baskin

Purchase at Amazon.com

ShiftOfHeart.com

IN SEARCH OF UTOPIA:
100+ Milestones
To Our Utopian Future

paperback
99 cent Kindle edition
Youtube Video

1 Percent | Abundance | Acceptance | Accomplishments| Accountability| Achievement| Acknowledge | Action| Activism| Activists| Adversity | Advertising | Age | Alienation | AIDS | Anger | Animals | Answers | Approval | Art | Aspiration | Attitude | Attraction | Awe | Bankruptcy | Banks | Be Yourself | Begin Now | Beliefs | Belonging | Bernie Sanders | Better World | Biodiversity | Black History | Breathe| Brotherhood | Campaign Finance Reform | Cure Cancer | Causes | Celebrate | Challenge | Change | Chaos | Character | Charity | Children | Child Soldiers | Choices | Citizens United | Citizenship | Civil Disobedience | Civil Rights | Climate Change | College Tuition | Civilization | Collaboration |Comfort | Comfortable | Community | Compassion| Competition| Compromise| Confidence| Conflict Resolution| Connection | Conscious Evolution | Consciousness | Conscience | Conservation | Consumerism | Cooperation | CoOps | Corporate Personhood | Corporations | Corruption | Couples | Courage| Creativity | Criticism | Culture of Peace | Curiosity | Debt | Democracy| Department of Peace | Depression | Deregulation | Desire| Destiny| Dialogue | Dignity | Disabilities | Disarmament | Disasters| Diversity | Do The Right Thing | Dreams | Ecology | Economy | Ecosystem | Education | Effort | Ego | Elders | Election Reform | Emotions | Empathy| Empower| Encourage | End Citizens United | Enemies | Energy | Enthusiasm | Envision | Envy | Equality | Evil | Example| Excellence| Exercise| Expectations| Experience | Fair Trade | Failure | Fame | Family | Fast Track | Fathers | Fear | Feelings | Focus | Forests | Forgiveness | Fracking | Freedom | Friendship | Future | Global Awakening | Global Warming | Globalization | GMO Labeling | Goals | Goodwill | Government | Grassroots | Gratitude | Greed | Habitat | Habits | Happiness | Healing | Health | Heart | Heroes | History | Home | Homeless | Honor | Hope | Hugs | Human Rights | Humanitarian | Humanity | Humor | Hunger  | Ideals | Idealist | Imagination | Imagine | Improvement | Inclusion | Income Inequality | Indigenous | Individuality | Infrastructure | Inner Peace | Inspire | Integrity | Intention| Interconnection | Interdependence | Institutions | Interfaith | Intuition | Invention | Jealousy | Joy | Justice | Keystone XL Pipeline | Kind Word | Kindness | Kinship | Know Thyself | Knowledge | Labor | Landmines | Language | Laughter | Law | Leadership | Liberals | Listening | Literacy | Living | Living Wage | Love | Loneliness| Luck| Make a Difference| Mankind| Marriage| Meaning of Life | Media | Meditation | Memories| Mentoring| Microcredit | Military Budget | Millennium Development Goals | Minimum Wage | Miracles | Mission | Mistakes | Money | Morality| Mothers| Motivation| Movements| Music| Mystery| Mystical | Natural Resources | Nature | Networking| Nonconformity | No Fast Track | No Nukes | Nonviolence | Now | NSA Surveillance | Nurture | Obstacles | Opportunity | Oppression | Options | Organize | Parents | Pain | Parks | Participation | Partnership | Patience | Patriot Act | Patriotic | Peace | Peace On Earth | Peacekeeping | Peacetopia | Perseverance | Personal Growth | Personhood | Philanthropy | Philosophy | Plan | Police Militarization | Politics | Population | Positivity | Possibilities | Potential | Poverty | Power | Praise | Present | Pride | Principles | Priorities | Prison Reform | Problem Solving | Protest | Progress | Progressive | Prosperity | Public Opinion | Purpose | Question | Racism | Recycling | Redemption | Regulations | Reinvent | Remembered | Refugees| Resist | Resources | Respect | Responsibility | Revenge | Role Model | Root Causes | Sadness| Satisfaction| Science | Searching| Security| Self-Discovery| Self-Esteem| Self-Improvement| Senior Citizens | Shadow | Silence| Simplicity | Sisters | Skeptic | Slavery | Smile | Smoking | Social Entrepreneurs | Social Security | Society | Solace | Solitude | Solutions | Soulmates | Species Exctinction | Spirituality | Status Quo | Strength | Success | Sustainability | Sympathy | Talent | Tax Reform | Teachers | Teamwork | Technology | Thanksgiving | Thoughts | Time | Time Out to Refocus| Tolerance | Torture | TPP | Trees | Trust| Truth| Understanding | United Nations | Utopia | Values | Vegetarian | Veterans | Victory | Violence| Volunteer | Waiting | War | Water | Wealth Inequality |Wealth | Whistleblowers | Wilderness | Wildlife | Will | Willing | Willpower | WIN-WIN | Winning | Wisdom | Wishes | Witness | Women | Wonder | Woods | Work | World Federation | Worrying | Youth

SupportProgressives.com - Help Elect Progressive Candidates