Civil rights are the protections and privileges of personal power given to all citizens by law. Civil rights are distinguished from "human rights" or "natural rights", also called "our God-given rights". They are rights that are bestowed by nations on those within their territorial boundaries, while natural or human rights are rights that many scholars claim should belong to all people. For example, the philosopher John Locke (1632–1704) argued that the natural rights of life, liberty and property should be converted into civil rights and protected by the sovereign state as an aspect of the social contract. Others have argued that people acquire rights as an inalienable gift from the deity or at a time of nature before governments were formed.
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