Friday was the anniversary of the ratification of the Bill Of Rights — the first 10 amendments of the United States Constitution.

I am reminded of an event that took place on a public street last spring. I was on a lonely city street with almost no parked cars and no traffic at the time. I parked and waited in my van for a friend whom I knew would be there. Soon he came to my window. I slipped out and we stood to talk near my front bumper. In a minute a man came and told me that I could not talk with my friend there. He said that I would have to see him at his home.

Being a government teacher for three decades, I kindly asked the stern man if he owned the street where we were talking. He said he did not. I informed him that the First Amendment gave us the right to assemble in a public place. I continued to say that the Bill Of Rights further gave us the freedom of speech when we met, and that the U.S. Constitution guaranteed us the freedom of religion for us to discuss what the Bible says — right there on the side of the street.

I was surprised that over 200 years after the Bill Of Rights granted us these rights that someone would deny us our First Amendment rights here in America.

I chalk it up to a good illustration for my government classes on someone trying to deny us the rights that we are guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution.

Dan Manka, Harvey

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