The Law of the Soviet State

By Andrey Y. Vyshinsky; Hugh W. Babb | Go to book overview

IX
The Fundamental Rights and Obligations of USSR Citizens

SEC. 1: INTRODUCTION

CLARIFICATION OF the rights and obligations of citizens, in the light of a truly scientific approach thereto, discloses the true position of personality in the state being studied, and thereby makes it possible to demonstrate the class essence of that state. This explains the fact that, in the bourgeois doctrine of state law, the subdivision concerned with so-called personal rights is the most false and hypocritical of all, the furthest removed from the tasks of truly scientific investigation. That bourgeois theories of personal rights are highly complex and intricate and extraordinarily abstract is due to the fact that precisely here are the contradictions between reality and the rights proclaimed by the bourgeois constitutions particularly sharp. It is not surprising that, for all the wealth of bourgeois literature on the matter of civil rights, that problem is, by the admission of bourgeois jurists themselves, the least worked out.1 Even such a matter as that of the juridical significance of constitutional rules concerning civil rights in bourgeois public laws is still in dispute. A notable proportion of bourgeois political scientists conclude that these constitutional rules have no juridical significance and are merely promissory.2

Only in the USSR does socialist reality afford the possibility of completely unfolding a doctrine of civil rights and obligations without fear of coming upon a hiatus between reality and theory, between the factual position of personality on the one hand and the civil rights and obligations established by the Constitution on the other.

____________________
1
Gambarov, Freedom and Its Guaranties ( St. Petersburg, 1910).
2
Cf. Thoma article (in the three-volume commentary on the Weimar Constitution), Die Grundrechte und Grundpflichten der Reichsversfassung ( 1929). See also Esmein, Éléments de droit constitutionnel ( 1925), Vol. I, pp. 561-562.

-538-

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