Civil liberties

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Civil liberties concern basic rights and freedoms that are guaranteed in a democratic society. The constitutions of many democracies have bills of rights that describe basic liberties and rights. Civil liberties guarantee a person against government interference except when a person affects other people by exercising his/her liberties. Then the courts of law in a democratic country interpret the limits of civil liberties.[1]

In the United States these are explicitly identified in the Bill of Rights and the Constitution or interpreted through the courts and law makers. U.S. Civil liberties include but are not limited to:

  • the freedom of speech
  • the freedom of religion
  • the right to privacy
  • the right of access to information
  • the right to be free from unreasonable searches of your home
  • the right to a fair court trial
  • the freedom to marry
  • the freedom of association
  • the right to vote
  • the freedom of assembly


  1. The Cato Institute [1]