of Sophont Rights
Approved by the Supreme Assembly and Ratified
on 1 January 2170
The representatives of the people of the United
Federation of Planets, organized as the Supreme Assembly and the Federation
Council, believing that the ignorance, neglect, or contempt of the
rights of sophonts are the sole cause of public calamities and of
the corruption of governments, have determined to set forth in a solemn
declaration the natural, unalienable, and sacred rights of all sophonts,
in order that this declaration, being constantly before all the members
of the United Federation of Planets, shall remind them continually
of their rights and duties; in order that the acts of the legislative
power, as well as those of the executive power, may be compared at
any moment with the objects and purposes of all political institutions
and may thus be more respected, and, lastly, in order that the grievances
of the citizens, based hereafter upon simple and incontestable principles,
shall tend to the maintenance of the Articles of Federation and redound
to the happiness of all. Therefore the Supreme Assembly and the Federation
Council recognizes and proclaims, in the presence and under the auspices
of the Supreme Being, the following rights of sophonts and of the
- Sophonts are born and remain free and equal in rights. The law
must in all cases respect this principle.
- The aim of all government is the preservation of the natural and
imprescriptible rights of sophonts. These rights are liberty, property,
security, conscience, expression, initimate association and resistance
- The principle of all sovereignty resides essentially in the nation.
No body nor individual may exercise any authority which does not
proceed directly from the nation.
- Liberty consists in the freedom to do everything which injures
no one else; hence the exercise of the natural rights of each sophont
has no limits except those which assure to the other members of
the society the enjoyment of the same rights.
- Law can only prohibit such actions as are demonstrably and objectively
hurtful to society. Nothing may be prevented which is not forbidden
by law, and no one may be forced to do anything not provided for
- Law is the expression of the general will. Every citizen has a
right to participate personally, or through his representative,
in its foundation. It must be the same for all, whether it protects
or punishes. All citizens, being equal in the eyes of the law, are
equally eligible to all dignities and to all public positions and
occupations, according to their abilities, and without distinction
except that of their virtues and talents. The law may not designate
any group of citizens and deny them equal benefits, standing, priviledges
or protections based solely upon their membership in said designated
- No person shall be accused, arrested, or imprisoned except in
the cases and according to the forms prescribed by law. Any one
soliciting, transmitting, executing, or causing to be executed,
any arbitrary order, shall be punished. But any citizen summoned
or arrested in virtue of the law shall submit without delay, as
resistance constitutes an offense. Under no circumstances may any
person be compelled to provide evidence or testimony against themselves.
- The law shall provide for such punishments only as are strictly
and obviously necessary, and no one shall suffer punishment except
it be legally inflicted in virtue of a law passed and promulgated
before the commission of the offense.
- As all persons are held innocent until they shall have been proven
guilty, if arrest shall be deemed indispensable, all harshness not
essential to the securing of the prisoner's person shall be severely
repressed by law.
- No one shall be disquieted on account of his opinions, including
his religious views, provided their manifestation does not infringe
upon the rights of others.
- The free communication of ideas and opinions is one of the most
precious of the rights of sophonts. Every citizen may, accordingly,
speak, write, and print with freedom, but shall be responsible for
such abuses of this freedom as shall be defined by law.
- The security of the rights of sophonts and of the citizen requires
public military forces. These forces are, therefore, established
for the good of all and not for the personal advantage of those
to whom they shall be entrusted.
- All the citizens have a right to decide, either personally or
by their representatives, as to the necessity of the public contribution;
to grant this freely; to know to what uses it is put; and to fix
the proportion, the mode of assessment and of collection and the
duration of the taxes.
- Society has the right to require of every public agent an account
of their administration.
- Since property is an inviolable and sacred right, no one shall
be deprived thereof except where public necessity, legally determined,
shall clearly demand it, and then only on condition that the owner
shall have been previously and equitably indemnified.
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