"A bill of rights is what the people are entitled to
against every government on earth, general or particular,
and what no just government should to rest on inference."
by:
Thomas Jefferson
(1743-1826), US Founding Father, drafted the Declaration of Independence, 3rd US President
Date:
1787
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Reader comments about this quote:
"entitled to" ? It was the founding premise of the de jure States united that if the Constitution did not give implicit authority to do a specific duty, it was denied the act. Such general and particular inference was to secure a just government (it was easier to define a select few duties for political servants than to define man's rights). Some founders realizing man's historical distortions of and violations against oral and written limitations, demanded a "Bill of Rights". AND BECAUSE, it is impossible to express each and every, any and all right(s), in every conceivable / inconceivable event or happenstance in an universally comprehensive communication, mere topic headings were referenced in the resulting Bill of Rights (for example; rights associated to and freedom of religion, speech, press, assembly, redress of grievances, arms ownership, privacy, etc., etc., etc.). To legislate morality, giving such legislation the force of "law", secures injustice and denies rights. A bill of rights is always going to be insufficient in covering the subject but, always a good ideal to assist against future tyranny.
 -- Mike, Norwalk     
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    There's a glitch in the quote as published above. The correct version should read: "a bill of rights is what the people are entitled to against every government on earth, general or particular, and what no just government should refuse, or rest on inference." The fact that the US constitution did leave so much to inference has contributed mightily to the erosion of the people's rights in this country.
     -- Barry, Petaluma     
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    The Bill of Rights was written to enumerate the rights that people are born with ... all over the world.
    And, just because some natural born rights are not enumerated within the Bill of Rights does not mean that those not spelled out in the constitution have been rescinded or don't exist.
    The Bill of Rights as stated by Mike, Norwalk, " A bill of rights is always going to be insufficient in covering the subject but, always a good ideal to assist against future tyranny."
     -- Mary M     
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