If you are wondering what civil rights is all about – then you should know that these are the rights that are granted to us and codified in our constitution. Civil rights, contrary to common perception did not originate with the Magna Carta which was signed into law in 1215 nor was it an American product. Rather, Civil rights which grant us our rights and protects us from infringement of the same, was conceived and practiced first in Ancient Greece, and then, made into common law by Ancient Romans. In fact, the civil rights was a bedrock on which rested the foundations of ancient Roman society itself. Today, it forms the basis of our very constitution; this is why it is essential that we do all we can to ensure that our civil rights are upheld despite the various challenges.
As a matter of fact, it is thanks to our civil rights, that we have the right to due process, the right to freedom of speech and the right to live with dignity, all of which are sacrosanct and enforced by our constitution. It is interesting that despite geographical boundaries, the idea of equal rights was both aspirational and motivational, and set into motion various events that would shape and change the destinies of mankind as a whole. Take the Magna Carta, it was not designed as a bill of rights, but more as a bill to limit a monarch’s power – it nevertheless codified civil rights for all subjects of the crown. And this in turn set into motion, several events which would reverberate through history starting with the reformation movement to the French revolution and the American independence. It should be recalled that one of the common denominators for these mass movements, is the lack of civil rights and the need by some to address this inequality by any means possible.
The disparity between the rich and poor often feeds into this and results in one group subverting the rights of another. This often results in a mass movement, a movement by common people to redress the absence of civil rights, e.g. Martin Luther King and the civil rights movement. King was instrumental in addressing the disparity in civil rights between white and non-whites in the US. While this disparity was more on account of racism, the Martin Luther King movement was nevertheless pivotal in showcasing the importance of civil rights and why every human being should be conferred with equal rights, on par with others.
After all, without our civil rights, we would not be able to enjoy all the rights and privileges granted to us. And needless to say, it is our duty to uphold and protect the same. Our society has its own fair share of problems and challenges and it is to be expected that some will seek to subvert our rights which we should fight against. It is important that every man, woman, and child enjoys the same rights, with equal freedom without being restrained by anyone.