Civil rights along with potical rights are class of freedoms and rights protecting individuals from unwarranted actions of the government. These rights ensure the ability of the individual to participate in the civil as well as political condition of the state without repression or discrimination.
Both civil rights and political rights have its own characteristics. Civil rights include assurance of physical safety and integrity for the people. It also ensures that people are not forced into labor. Protection from discrimination based on sexual orientation, race, religion, gender, and more is also observed by the rights. Civil rights provide equal access to people concerning issues of culture, education, healthcare, and more.
Meanwhile the political rights include natural justice in law that is in procedural process. The rights also include a due process and a fair trial. Political rights initiate political freedom for individuals such as right to vote, right to petition, right to assemble, freedom of association, right to participate in politics and civil society, freedom of movement, freedom of the press, freedom of expression and speech, and freedom of conscience and thought.
The civil and the political rights consist the first portion of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights whereas the second portion consists of the cultural, social, and economic rights. Civil rights involve the theory of human rights as well.
Civil rights are enfoceable privileges or rights that once interfered with another right may result into an action. In the United States, the most important expansion for civil rights was the enactment of the 13th and 14th Amendments. The 13th Amendment had abolished slavery in the entire United States while the 14th Amendment ensures that no state in the United States shall be deprived of property, liberty, or lfie without the lawof due process.
Civil rights along with the political rights were among the first rights to be codified and recognized. In other countries, these rights are referred as constitutional rights where bill of rights is included. These rights are also defined in the International Covenant Civil & Political Rights. There is no need to codify civil and political rights for protection, although many democratic countries have created formal written guarantee for these rights.
Civil rights are regarded as natural rights. In 1774, Thomas Jefferson wrote in his book entitled “A Summary View of the Rights of British America” that free people can claim their rights from the laws of nature and not as a gift of their chief legislative. Custom also plays an important role in civil rights because there are implied rights existing even though it is not written by law. One example of these rights is the right to privacy.
In many countries, the application of civil and political rights to certain individuals is always a subject of controversy. Local citizens of the countries have greater protection for civil rights compared to non-citizens. In addition, civil and political rights are considered to be universal and can be applied to all people. Once civil an political rights are not guaranteed to all people as part of the law’s equal protection, ensurance of social unrest will occur. Over the last 60 years, civil rights movements have resulted into extended civil rights.