Rights and Responsibilities
© North Carolina Community College System
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Everyone living in the
United States has the rights
that are in the first two
amendments to the Constitution.
The First Amendment gives
everyone the right to
• freedom of expression,
• freedom of speech,
• freedom of assembly (freedom to
gather together peaceably),
• freedom to petition the government,
• and freedom of worship.
The Second Amendment gives
• the right to bear arms.
But some rights are only for
United States citizens. These are
1. the right to vote in a federal election, and
2. and the right to run for federal office.
Some responsibilities, too, are
only for United States citizens:
1. voting in a federal election,
(Voting is both a right and a responsibility!)
Citizens vote for leaders
to represent them and
their ideas. The leaders
support the citizens’
2. serving on a jury.
The Constitution gives citizens the right to a
trial by a jury of their peers. A jury is made up
of U.S. citizens.
There are many ways
Americans can participate in
their democracy. They can
• vote,
• join a political party,
• help with a campaign,
• join a civic group,
• join a community group,
Race for the Cure!
• give an elected official an opinion on an
• call Senators and Representatives,
• publicly support or oppose an issue or
Lower N.C. Gas Taxes!
• run for office, and
• write to a newspaper.
People who are not citizens can
participate in seven of the last ten
Can you find which seven?
In our next lesson, we will look at
the promises people make when
they become naturalized American

Lesson 11: Rights and Responsibilities - NC-NET