We are citizens in that we owe allegiance to our Government and in return our Government owes us protection. As good Citizens we contribute our personal time to our American Society, our local Community and our Friends and Neighbors. We vote, pay our taxes, and follow the law. We ensure the security of our Neighborhoods and Work Places. We volunteer our time to good causes, we respect the rights of others and demand the same for ourselves. We contribute to those less fortunate who work hard for themselves. We conduct ourselves in accordance with American Family Values and respect everyone's right to practice their own religion and live as they please. We know and understand our History and live up to the ideals expressed in The Declaration of Independence, Constitution and Bill of Rights.
When we speak of Citizenship we are normally referring to "the quality of an individual's response to membership in a community". The concept embodies all that is good in model Citizens.
One must first understand the definitions of the words Citizen and Citizenship. From Websters1:
Citizen: 1 : an inhabitant of a city or
town; especially : one entitled to the rights and privileges of a
Citizenship: 1 : the status of being a
Rights and Obligations
Notice that a Citizen is one who is entitled to the rights and privileges of a freeman. In American Society, this carries with it many benefits not normally experienced by Citizens of many other Nations on this earth.
Citizenship in the United States means that the Government owes protection to the Citizen. Along with the rights and privileges and protection afforded the Citizen is an obligation on the part of the Citizen to owe allegiance to the government.
Some of us unfortunately forget the obligation of the Citizen and keep this a "one-way street" where we just make demands on our Government. This defies History, the facts of Citizenship and the Common Sense of our individual existence on this earth.
Good Citizens are first Good Neighbors. Our Society has provided a standard of living to the average American that is unsurpassed in the world. Good jobs for more than one "bread winner" in each household has provided the spending power for Citizens to purchase items resulting from significant advances in technology. This has made a great variety of entertainment products available to Americans.
We spend much of our time making money and then experiencing the relaxation from the entertainment we have in our homes from the technology we purchase. Many of us go out to the Movies, see other local entertainment or travel great distances to achieve our favorite forms of relaxation. All of these result in less time spent with Neighbors. In fact, many of us do not even know our Neighbors.
We must get out in our Neighborhoods and meet the people who share our Living areas. Lend a helping hand. Our Children play in our Neighborhoods and the mutual security of all of us and our children depends on the vigilance of each of us in keeping our Neighborhoods safe and our children well behaved and happy. The same obligation to ensure the safety and security of our Work Places also exists. We must get out and meet and get to know the people around us. Strangers are welcome but all must prove worthy of being a Citizen in our Communities and Work Places that provide American Security and Opportunity.
Every Community has special needs. The local economy, weather, lay of the land and the make-up of the population, all combine to make each Community across this great Nation of ours unique. Government and Employers alone cannot provide the legislation and resources needed by each and every Community across the Nation.
Fund raising activities , Service Clubs, Schools, Churches, Scouts etc. all sponsor efforts that pour millions of dollars into local charities annually. On a global scale, the United States contributes more money to world charities than any other nation on earth.
All of the Organizations that sponsor effort need people to organize and lead. See our Ceremonies Page for some resources to aid in organizing and leading meetings and ceremonies.
Good Americans live Principles and Values that are consistent with our Founding Documents of Freedom. We teach our children the Principles and Values of Free Individuals in a Free Society. Although at times we may fail, we work tirelessly to be men and women of Integrity, Self-discipline, Proactivity, Humility and Empathy. We believe in the Principle of Human Freedom to ensure we sustain our Free Society. We believe in the Principle of Universal Harmony so we sustain our Families by living in "synch" with the earth and our universe.
President George W. Bush at his inauguration echoed this sentiment: "America has never been united by blood or birth or soil. We are bound by ideals that move us beyond our backgrounds, lift us above our interests and teach us what it means to be citizens. Every child must be taught these principles. Every citizen must uphold them. And every immigrant, by embracing these ideals, makes our country more, not less, American."
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