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Transcript of State Constitutions
What were they? , Duh. They're really really really old, yellow pieces of paper with scribbly marks all over them. Actually, State Constitutions mean much more than that to us Americans, as they were the foundation for the system of government (groan) that we have today. So what's a constitution anyway? A constitution is an official document that delcares the laws, decrees, ordinances, punishments, principles, priorities, organization, processes, hierarchies, mechanisms, foundations, and basic frame of a government. however, a constitution cannot itself carry out the law; it depends on a jusicial branch to interpret it and an executive branch to enforce it. Waaa?? O.K. So say that Spongebob was sent to jail because he was jumping on jellyfish with only his underwear on. He was jailed because there was a law against "public indecency" and "animal abuse" in Bikini Bottom. However, this law does not come directly from the Ocean Country (?? i don't know) Constitution but probably stems from its idelas; the Constitution probably says something like, "Everyone should follow the commonsensical laws that are ingrained into them" or some official phrase like that. Obviously, Bikini Bottom decided that jumping up and down in your underwear on top of jellyfish is not normal. YAAAAAAAAAAAAH!!!! Uh huh. cool. Got that. Ok. But what about rights and stuff? Good Question. The constitution of Massachusetts guarantees the "...right of enjoying and defending their lives and their liberties; that of acquiring, possessing, and protecting property; in short, that of seeking and obtaining hteir safety and happiness". Even though these terms are very general, they show the state of Virginia's priorities well enough- that you can use and protect the stuff that you have, and be safe and happy. This guarantees that the State of Virginia will always protect these rights. (if you are a resident of Virginia). Okay, so now we know basically what constitutions in general were, we can now look into what the state constitutions were. As the name suggests, they were constitutions that the states wrote out for themselves. State constitutions were written to insure the rights of all citizens, and also to limit the power of government (so that people who suddenly get power-high aren't able to make laws like stating that all Saturdays are Bang Your Head Really Hard On Something Metal For Fourteen Consecutive Hours And Collapse Afterwards Saturdays.) State governments were in reality pretty messed up for us today. For example, women couldn't vote (except in New Jersey for a short period of time), African Americans couldn't vote except for in a few states, and they had to have property. So basically, to be able to vote, you had to be at least 21 (bye, little kids), white, (so long, African Americans), and a male (good riddance, you girls, XD) Several states, including Virginia, had a bill of rights, or a list of rights and freedoms that the government promises to protect. Some freedoms include those of trial by jury, religion, and press THE END!!!!! THIS IS THE IMPORTANT STUFF, GUYS!!!! uuuu(**)uuuu
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