The Constitution started off with a bill of rights. First of all, it declared that Texas was an independent and free state as well as that it was subject solely to the Constitution of the United States. The inherent political power was declare along with the Republican form of government. The bill of rights declared equal rights for all free men. It also provided that the writ of habeas corpus should not be unduly delayed or suspended. The Constitution also forbade religious tests as a requirement for office (except for acknowledgement of Supreme Being’s existence), and guaranteed security from unreasonable searches or seizures.

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It guaranteed the freedom of worship. Also, it guaranteed the liberty of speech and press. It established the rights of criminally accused. In particular, it provided for the right of citizens to obtain bail as well as to be tried by a jury. Next, it guaranteed the right to keep and bear arms. The constitution prohibited excessive bail, excessive fines, and cruel and unusual punishment. It also forbade double jeopardy. It forbade the imprisonment for debt. Also, it prohibited outlawed and transportation out of state for offense. Further, it prohibited monopolies and perpetuities, as well as entailments and primogeniture. The Constitution also provided for establishment of an effective system of public school education, where the board of education replaced the position of the superintendent of education. The citizens had a right for “due course.”

The responsibilities of Texas’ citizens that stem from the Constitution of 1876 are based on its Bill of Rights and other provisions. By and large, the citizens were supposed to become more socially active. Concerned and rather active membership in communities was seen as the primary civil responsibility. The actions and behaviours could be electoral citizenship activities, as well as participation on boards that do not make profits or on school boards. The citizens were supposed to pay taxes that were levied on them in order to support the school system and for other purposes in the community. For instance, every male citizen had to pay a tax of $1 for educational causes, as adopted by the Constitution of 1876. Perhaps, equally important was the responsibility to support the Constitution and defend it. Also, people were supposed to obey the laws adopted by the state and by the central government.

The right for a fair trial with a jury meant that citizens were to come and serve as part of jury when called. Other responsibilities were staying informed about the issues that affect the community, taking part in the democratic process, and respecting the beliefs, opinions, and rights of other people. Acting in a tolerant manner in such sensitive issues as religious denomination and worship was the responsibility which stemmed from the respective rights of freedom of worship and prohibition of religious trial before accepting an individual to the public office. The citizens were responsible for ensuring the equality of rights for all free persons and were required to sustain this equality in all social interactions and in business. At the same, time it was the responsibility of all Texans to learn about their rights and exercise them in everyday life. In addition, having the right to bear and keep arms suggests the responsibility of Texan citizens for protecting their land in case of military invasions.

Overall, the responsibilities of Texan citizens stemmed from the Constitution of 1876 and were aimed at sustaining the democratic order and equality for all free men. They concern a variety of life spheres ranging from taking part in public life to personal commitment to acting within the boundaries of law.