Most of us are familiar with the United States Constitution and it's amendments, but what many folks don't remember is that as a state, California has it's own Constitution that specifically protects us coastal folk from the tyranny of the few. Our state constitution was ratified in 1879 & has since been amended over 500 times! We have a much broader selection of inalienable rights as Californians, such as:
-Article 1, Section 1 defines our rights as "enjoying and defending life and liberty, acquiring, possessing, and protecting property, and pursuing and obtaining safety, happiness, and privacy.". Unlike the U.S. Constitution, privacy is explicitly protected in California. No if's, and's, or but's about it. That is why abortion is constitutionally protected in California, regardless of the federal opinion!
- Article 1, Section 3 reads: "The people have the right of access to information concerning the conduct of the people's business, and, therefore, the meetings of public bodies and the writings of public officials and agencies shall be open to public scrutiny.". In California, you have the right to know what they're doing in Sacramento & the whole secrecy-for-security bullshit they pull in Washington ain't legal in these parts.
- Article 1, Section 8 reads: "A person may not be disqualified from entering or pursuing a business, profession, vocation, or employment because of sex, race, creed, color, or national or ethnic origin." The Equal Rights Amendment that failed to be tacked on to the federal constitution is alive & well in Cali.
- Article1, Section 14 reads: " A person unable to understand English who is charged with a crime has a right to an interpreter throughout the proceedings.". That is why they get to go first at the courthouse, it is a constitutional right!
- Article 1, Section 20 says: "Non-citizens have the same property rights as citizens.". We have compelled ourselves to treat non-citizens as human beings too! How novel!
- Article 1, Section 21: "Property owned before marriage or acquired during marriage by gift, will, or inheritance is separate property.". Give me my dowry back, motherfucker.