Tuesday, October 21, 2014
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

A year abroad offers contrasts

By
From page A10 | September 19, 2013 |

By Gabriel Bick

Have you ever thought about how the U.S. Constitution affects your life? Many people never think about how the Constitution affects their lives. Before last year, I had never thought about how it affected my life, either.

However, moving to a new country last year for a year made me think about how the Constitution affects my life. Before last year, there were rights I took for granted, as well as expectations of equal treatment, and also a basic expectation of fairness and decency. My last year in Southeast Asia has made me think about how the Constitution affects my life.

There were many rights that I used to take for granted that did not apply in Southeast Asia. For example, one part of the First Amendment, free speech: I have always expected to be able to say whatever I wanted to. However, the country that I lived in last year had only limited free speech. This makes me glad to live in the United States, where free speech is a given due to our Constitution.

Another right that I was always assured of was free exercise of religion. Although I have never been religious, I placed confidence in the fact that I could practice any religion I wanted to. Last year, I learned that native people born in the country where I was living had to adhere to a certain religion. Additionally, those native people could be persecuted under an additional set of laws compared to the rest of the population.

Another difference between the two countries was different treatment of people. In the United States, equal treatment is expected. On the other hand, the country that I lived in last year had better treatment for the native people than for other races, such as Indians or Chinese. This includes better schooling, discounts on property and qualification for scholarships, government positions and ownership of businesses. This shocked me, as in the United States there would never be a race formally given an advantage over another race.

Another difference between the two countries was levels of corruption. While in the United States, corruption is low, there is a much higher rate of corruption in the country that I lived in last year. For example, the majority of police will take bribes, or “coffee money.” This stems from a weak government, while a strong and stable government based on the Constitution of the United States is why there is less corruption here.

My past year living in a country within Southeast Asia has made me think about how the Constitution affects my life. It gives me more freedoms, better rights and equal treatment. I am grateful for how the founding fathers shaped our Constitution and thus, our nation.

— Gabriel Bick of Davis, age 14, is the winner of the junior high division of the Davis Constitution Day essay contest.

Comments

comments

Special to The Enterprise

  • Recent Posts

  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this newspaper and receive notifications of new articles by email.

  • .

    News

    Suspected arson fires worry neighbors, firefighters

    By Lauren Keene | From Page: A1 | Gallery

     
    Winters homicide case enters jury-selection phase

    By Lauren Keene | From Page: A1

     
    So much more than a cute baby store

    By Bob Schultz | From Page: A1 | Gallery

     
    Fill the Boot for the hungry

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A2

     
    Existing home sales rise in September

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

    For the record

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A2

     
    Democrats love seeing minimum wage on the ballot

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

    Pets of the week

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A2 | Gallery

     
    Tax tips offered for sole proprietors

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    Apply now for community mediation training

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

     
    Paws for Thought: Pets for Vets: matches made in heaven

    By Evelyn Dale | From Page: A3 | Gallery

    ‘Tokyo Kill’ author will visit bookstore

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3

     
    Sierra Club gathers for morning walks

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3

    DPNS has play group, preschool openings

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

     
    Yolo Knitters Guild plans fall meetings

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    Local farm products found at hospital market

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

     
    First-time home buyers get free advice

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

    Psychiatric clinic hosts open house

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

     
    Beer dinner set on Co-op patio

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

    Walkin’ the Dawg through the park

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4 | Gallery

     
     
    Essay contest winners will be honored Tuesday

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

    Volunteers sought to make veggie bags

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

     
    Library hosts after-hours teen movie nights

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

    Forum eyes impacts of raising the local minimum wage

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A5

     
    NAMI-Yolo family support group meets Sunday

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7

    To save the birds, look to the fish

    By Kat Kerlin | From Page: A7 | Gallery

     
    Birding field trip planned Saturday

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A12 | Gallery

    .

    Forum

    Ready to go, whatever happens

    By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B5

     
    Where there’s a will …

    By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B5

    These three are the best

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A8

     
    Sunder has bold vision

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A8

    Archer, Nolan are my picks

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A8

     
    She’s innovative, passionate

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A8

    An accidental fan becomes a baseball devotee

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A8

     
    U.N. steps up to lead Ebola response

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A8

    John Cole cartoon

    By Debbie Davis | From Page: A8

     
    .

    Sports

    UCD’s Wegener is the engine that drives the train

    By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1 | Gallery

     
    Villegas wonderstrike powers Devils

    By Evan Ream | From Page: B1 | Gallery

    DHS golfers take the title

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

     
    Devil defense regresses in football loss

    By Thomas Oide | From Page: B1

    Sports briefs: Top-end tennis talent helps DHS girls grab a win

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B2 | Gallery

     
    Junior Blue Devils: Regular slate ends with 2 Davis teams playoff bound

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B3 | Gallery

    After running the gridiron gauntlet, can UCD regroup?

    By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B8 | Gallery

     
    .

    Features

    .

    Arts

     
    Stories on Stage Davis presents tales by Lescroart, Montieth

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A11 | Gallery

     
    .

    Business

    .

    Obituaries

    Peggy Belenis Swisher

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

     
    .

    Comics

    Comics: Tuesday, October 21, 2014 (set 1)

    By Creator | From Page: B5

     
    Comics: Tuesday, October 21, 2014 (set 2)

    By Creator | From Page: B7