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J. R. W. HITCHCOCK, T. K. NELSON,
Sec. 12. This Constitution shall take effect and be in force on and after the fourth day of July, eighteen hundred and seventy-nine, at twelve o'clock meridian, so far as the same relates to the election of all officers, the commencement of their terms of office, and the meeting of the Legislature. In all other respects, and for all other purposes, this Constitution shall take effect on the first day of January, eighteen hundred and eighty, at twelve o'clock meridian.
J. P. HOGE, President. Attest: EDWIN F. SMITH, Secretary, A, R. ANDREWS, WILLIAM J. GRACE, THOMAS M'CONNELL, JAMES J. AYERS, V. A. GREGG,
JOHN M'COY, CLITUS BARBOUR, JNO. S. HAGER,
THOS. B. M'FARLAND, EDWARD BARRY, JOHN B. HALL,
HIRAM MILLS, JAMES N. BARTON, THOMAS HARRISON, WM. S. MOFFATT, C. J. BEERSTECHER,
JOEL A. HARVEY, JOHN F. M’NUTT,
W. W. MORELAND, PETER BELL,
CONRAD HEROLD, L. D. MORSE, MARION BIGGS,
D. W. HERRINGTON, JAMES E. MURPHY, E. T. BLACKMER, 8. G. HILBORN,
HENRY NEUNABER, JOSIAH BOUCHER, VOLNEY E. HOWARD, CHAS. C. O'DONNELL, JAMES CAPLES,
SAM A. HOLMES, GEORGE OHLEYER, AUG. H. CHAPMAN, W. J. HOWARD,
JAMES O'SULLIVAN, J. M. CHARLES,
WM. P. HUGHEY, JAMES M. PORTER, JOHN D. CONDON, W. F. HUESTIS,
WILLIAM H. PROUTY, C W. CROSS, G. W. HUNTER,
M. R. C. PULLIAM, HAMLET DAVIS, DANIEL INMAN,
CHAS. F. REED,
GEORGE A. JOHNSON, PATRICK REDDY,
JNO. M. RHODES,
JAS. S. REYNOLDS,
HORACE C. ROLFE, J. M. DUDLEY, JAMES H. KEYES,
CHAS. S. RINGGOLD, PRESLEY DUNLAP, JOHN J. KENNY,
JAS. M'M. SHAFTER,
GEO. W. SCHELL,
RUFUS SHOEMAKER, M. M. ESTEE,
R. M. LAMPSON, E. 0. SMITH,
GEO. V. SMITH,
H, W. SMITH,
JOHN C. STEDMAN,
EDWARD MARTIN, D. C. STEVENSON, B. B. GLASSCOCK,
J. WEST MARTIN, GEO. STEELE, JOSEPH C. GORMAN, RUSH M'COMAS, CHAS. V. STUART, W. P. GRACE,
W. J. SWEASEY,
JOHN G. M'CALLUM,
CONSTITUTION OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA.
H. K. TURNER,
J. V. WEBSTER,
WM. F. WHITE,
H. C. WILSON,
JOS. W. WINANS,
THE MANNER OF MAKING STATUTORY LAWS, AND OF PUTTING
THEM IN PRACTICE.
Law, in its widest sense, is a rule of action, of being, or of condition; and may exist in the nature of things, in the power which controls them, or in artificial rules adopted for their guidance. To the latter class, most, if not all, human laws belong.
Municipal law may be defined to be a rule of human action prescribed by the supreme power of the State, commanding what such supreme power claims to be right, and endeavoring to prohibit what such supreme power claims to be wrong; and as municipal laws, in a free country, are framed by representatives chosen by the people, it is the duty of the people of a State, to read, and endeavor to understand, the laws which are made for them, and if such laws are unjust, to demand their repeal. This can easily be effected; for if any law which bas been enacted by the Legislature of a State, operates unjustly upon its citizens, the people have it in their power to select representatives to the next Legislature who will repeal such unjust or oppressive laws.
The method of making laws for the government of the people of a State, although simple, may not be understood by all persons, and especially not by all the boys and girls and young people, whose curiosity may tempt them to peep into this book, and perhaps to read some portions of it, for which reason an explanation of the manner in which statutory laws, or the laws of the State, are made, will probably be pardoned by those who understand the process well. Statutory laws are those which have been made by the Legislature of a State, and have generally been approved by the Governor of such State. But such is not always the case; for sometimes the Governor may think that a bill which is presented to him for his approval and signature would be unjust to the people; or that its provisions are contrary to the Constitution of the State, which is the supreme law of the State, that is, of all its officers and its people; or that the bill was passed hastily and without proper reflection on the part of the members of the Legislature ; or for some other reason which the Governor thinks a good one, he returns such bill to the House in which it was first introduced, and states, in writing, his reasons for thinking the bill should not become a law. In such a case, the Governor's refusal to approve the bill, and his returning it to the House in which it originated is called the “Governor's veto," and if similar action be taken by the President of the United States, with any bill which has passed both Houses of Congress—which constitute the Legislature of the nation,--such action is called the “President's veto."
Before proceeding with the explanation of the manner of making statutory laws, it may be well to say that there are other laws which are equally obligatory and binding on the people of a State, as are the statutory laws. These may be classed as the common law. They originated either in the common customs of the people, the origin of which may have been forgotten ; or in the decisions of the Supreme Court of the State on matters which have not been fully regulated by statutory laws, and having been acquiesced in and believed to be right and just by the people, have become the common law of the land. These laws, although they were not made by the representatives of the people in the Legislature of the State, are nevertheless the laws of the people, and all must obey them until they are modified, or superseded by statutory laws.
To explain the manner of making statutory laws, we will suppose that some gentleman, who has been elected to represent the people in the next Legislature, desires to have a law made providing that people may change their names in a certain way, if they desire to do so, for any good reason. Under the new Constitution of California, as well as under the Constitution of Nevada, such a law must be general; that is, it must be applicable to every person in every county in the State.
The Legislature of a State is composed of two bodies of men which, when in session, are called “Houses.” One of these bodies is called the Senate," and its members are
called Senators. The other body is called the "Assembly, and its members are called Assemblymen. Each of these bodies has a presiding officer. The officer who presides over the Senate is addressed as “Mr. President,” and the officer who presides over the Assembly is addressed as “Mr. Speaker.” In the Legislature of Nevada there are twenty-five Senators and fifty Assemblymen ; while under the new Constitution of California the Senate consists of forty members and the Assembly of eighty members; and before any bill can become a law, in either of these States, it must be voted for by a majority of all the members elected to each House of the Legislature.
We will suppose that the gentleman who desires to have a law made to change people's names is a member of the Assembly of California. Now in order to procure the passage of such a law, he would first have to draw what is called a bill, for the Constitution says that “No law shall be passed except by bill.” The gentleman would therefore draw a bill which we will suppose to be something after the following:
[TITLE :) An Act in relation to changing the names of individuals. [Then the enacting clause of the bill would follow, as the Constitution provides in these words :) The People of the State of California, represented in Senate and
Assembly, do enact as follows : Section 1. Any person desiring to have his or her name changed, may file with the clerk of the Superior Court, within whose jurisdiction he or she may reside, a petition verified by his or her oath, addressed to said Court, stating his or her present name, the name he or she desires to bear in future, and the reasons for desiring such change.
Sec. 2. Upon the filing of such petition, the applicant shall make out and procure to be published in some newspaper of general circulation in the county where the petitioner resides, for the period of thirty days, a notice, stating the fact of the filing of the petition, its object, his or her present name, and the name which he or she desires to bear in future.
Sec. 3. If within ten days after the expiration of such thirty days no written objection shall be filed with said clerk,