How do the principles of the constitution protect our rights?

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caroline-harrison eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The U.S. Constitution is the founding document of the U.S. government. It sets up the structure of the federal government and articulates the rights of individuals in the United States. The Constitution sets up the three branches of government: the executive branch, the legislative branch, and the judicial branch. These three areas of government act as checks and balances against each other to ensure that no one area of government is too powerful. For example, Congress (the legislative branch) can pass a law but the President (Executive Branch) can veto that law. The most obvious source of individual rights in the Constitution is in the Bill of Rights which tells us which civil and political freedoms we all possess. For example, the First Amendment gives us freedom of speech, freedom of religion, and freedom of assembly. Ultimately, the Constitution acts to clearly describe the powers of the federal government, which helps to ensure that the government does not overstep its bounds and infringe on the rights of states or individuals.