As Hentoff notes, most people are largely ignorant of their rights under the Constitution, and such ignorance bodes catastrophic consequences for self-government under our republican (with a small "r") democratic (with a small "d") system. And just as the citizenry need to know their rights under the Constitution, Hentoff argues that the police need to know and protect the people's rights as well. And it is here that the work of George Mason is so important, as Hentoff writes:
My primary hero of the full existence of the Constitution is George Mason, a Virginia delegate to the 1787 Constitutional Convention. Why him? He refused to sign the Constitution because it didn’t have a “declaration of rights” – the individual liberties of American citizens.
Because of George Mason, who was followed by other non-signers, James Madison introduced the Bill of Rights. These first 10 amendments to the Constitution, when ratified by enough states in 1791, guaranteed to We the People specific limits on government power.