“CIVICS” – a social science dealing with the RIGHTS and DUTIES of CITIZENS
REFLECTIONs of Our Common “American” Heritage
as well as their responsibilities … engaging in the political process. The word civics was an American English invention, modeled on politics, from the Latin civicus, “of a citizen”
a citizen, you are considered part of the nation and have an active role in determining what that nation does
civic knowledge and engagement including considering alternative viewpoints, appreciating diversity, analyzing the role of citizens in the political process, monitoring and understanding. current events, and thinking critically about political information.
promoting the quality of life in a community, through both political and non-political processes.”1 Civic engagement includes both paid and unpaid forms of political activism, environmentalism, and community and national service
A responsible citizen has knowledge about his/her role in community, state and the world. A responsible citizen has a role in making the world a better place to live (for every components in biosphere). A responsible citizen is change agent that acts out against injustice in social, economic, and environmental sectors
Voluntary Responsibilities of U.S.Citizens
- Voting. While voting is a right and privilege of citizenship, it is also a duty or responsibility. …
- Staying informed. …
- Community involvement. …
- Practicing tolerance. …
- Passing it on
“One Nation Under God”
ALMOST 3,000 YEARS AFTER THE COVENANT AT SINAI, THE PILGRIMS, WHO SAW THEMSELVES AS NEW ISRAELITES EMBARKED ON A VENTURE INTO THEIR OWN “HIDEOUS and DESOLATE WILDERNESS … DERIVED from the BIBLICAL IDEA of COVENANT.
Submerged with American thought and culture – especially secular constitutionalism – COVENANT IDEAS not only formed a significant part of the FOUNDATION of the United States, but have continued to INFLUENCE AMERICAN LIFE.
From their earliest beginnings, the people and polities comprising the United States have BOUND THEMSELVES TOGETHER through covenants to erect their New World order, DELIBERATELY FOLLOWING BIBLICAL PRECEDENTS.
The covenant concluded on the Mayflower on November 11, 1620, remains the FIRST hallowed document of the AMERICAN CONSTITUTIONAL tradition:
For the patriots of Samuel Adams’ “solemn league and covenant” against British oppression; for the framers of the constitutional compact of 1787;for Jeffersonwho referred to the young republic in his first inaugural address as a “chosen country;”for Lincoln who often characterized the American union as “a regular marriage;” for Johnson; and for millions of ordinary Americans, the CONCEPT OF COVENANT HAS BEEN REFLECTED IN REAL EXPERIENCES FROM JAMESTOWN to the PRESENT whereby INDIVIDUALS AND FAMILIES HAVE COME TOGETHER TO ESTABLISH GOVERNING ARRANGEMENTS BY COMPACT.
The Puritans: COVENANT Comes to the New World
The first political principles systematically enunciated in America were extensions and adaptations of the Puritans’ federal theology which SAW ALL SOCIETY AS AN OUTGROWTH OF THE BASIC BIBLICAL COVENANTS BETWEEN GOD AND HIS PEOPLE.
Winthrop referred to the GOOD COMMONWEALTH AS ONE COMMITTED to “FEDERAL LIBERTY,” or the FREEDOM to FREELY HARKEN to the LAW of the COVENANT.”
The Puritans sought to PLACE ALL RELATIONSHIPS AMONG PEOPLE ON a COVENANTAL BASIS.
Their congregations were COVENANT-FORMED PARTNERSHIPS of “SAINTS” (separated) which came into existence only when potential MEMBERS COVENANTED AMONG EACH OTHER, and survived only so long as the covenantal act remained valid (potentially but not necessarily forever).
All through the colonial era Americans went from compact to compact– a score of compacts and agreements on one frontier after another.”
Richard Niebuhr: “one of the great common patterns that guided men in the period when American democracy was formed…was the PATTERN of the COVENANT or of FEDERAL society.”
Winthrop and other Puritan divines revealed in their works, the Puritans who settled in New England combined a FUNDAMENTAL CONSERVATISM WITH AN UNHESITATING RADICALISM in a way that was to become as PARADIGMATIC FOR AMERICANS AS OTHER ASPECTS of THEIR APPROACH to LIFE
natural rights, social contract, popular sovereignty, limited government and republicanism and their influence on the foundation of the United States of America
democracy consists of four key elements: a political system for choosing and replacing the government through free and fair elections; the active participation of the people, as citizens, in politics and civic life; protection of the human rights of all citizens
American Values and Assumptions
- Individualism. …
- Equality. …
- Informality. …
- The Future, Change, and Progress. …
- Achievement, Action, Work, and Materialism. …
- Directness and Assertiveness. …
democracy, freedom, liberty, equality, justice, and opportunity, you’re on the right track. It was these ideals that first attracted European settlers to the land that is now America, and it is these ideals that continue to be cherished to this day.
The United States is among the freest nations on earth. Its citizens enjoy tremendous liberty thanks to the way the American government was set up by its founders. See, the ‘Founding Fathers’ grew up under British authority and knew what it was like to live without some of the freedoms we take for granted. So after the Revolutionary War, when it came time for them to establish a government, they formed a republic. A democracy is a government in which the people are able to choose their leaders. This is true in America for the vast majority of public offices where the winner is decided by popular vote. But at the presidential level, the electoral college system was established, so even though electoral votes are based on the popular vote, presidents are not directly elected. Hence America is a republic. The right to vote remains a cherished freedom that many other countries don’t have.
The liberties Americans enjo
the freedom to choose one’s religion (or no religion), the right to own firearms, the right to a fair trial, the right to freely express one’s views, these are all laid out in the American Constitution. The Constitutionwas written by America’s founders. It was adopted in 1789, and it’s kind of like a rulebook for our country and its people. It tells the government what it can and can’t do, and it tells citizens what their freedoms are.
Americans value justice. In our legal system A NATION of LAWS
“Enterprise” – “Toil”