justice,individual responsibility,Constitution,Thomas Jefferson,republic,George Washington,virtue,equality,liberty,Founders
Challenges of American Citizenship in the New Millennium Activity: Identifying Civic Values in the Constitution
In Handout A: Civic Virtues and the Constitution, students will read each of the following quotations and decide what civic values it requires of citizens. They will consider the following values: Courage, Initiative, Honor, Justice, Moderation, Perseverance, Respect, Responsibility, Resourcefulness, and Vigilance. Some quotations may have more than one answer.
Challenges of American Citizenship in the New Millennium Activity: Identifying Civic Virtues in Current Events
Using Handout B: Identifying Civic Virtues in Current Events, have students conduct a “scavenger hunt” for examples of civic virtue in everyday life. They may describe a situation that happens in your family or another event that they witness, or they may use online, broadcast, or print media to find examples of civic virtue in the news. For each event that they find, they should complete the summary and attach the clipping/printed online article.
Challenges of American Citizenship in the new Millennium
There is no way the Constitution will work if the people lose their virtue. Almost every Founding Father said or wrote something along these lines. A self-governing polity can only succeed when it is composed of individuals who can govern themselves. And if the people do not control themselves, they will either descend into self-destructive anarchy or come together in support of a dictator or despot emerging to embody their collective greed and lust for power. They would vote to give him more and more power, even as they congratulated themselves on their wisdom.