“True patriotism springs from a belief in the dignity of the individual, freedom and equality not only for Americans but for all people on earth, universal brotherhood and good will, and a constant and earnest striving toward the principles and ideals on which this country was founded.”
In an environment that becomes increasingly politically polarized with each passing week, it can be challenging to both hold resolutely to values and to create a community in which lofty concepts like “truth,” “justice,” and “patriotism” do not necessarily belong to one group over others. And yet, at Citizens Project, doing both (often simultaneously) is our central dilemma.
Over the last 24 years, we have witnessed advocates for diversity, equality, and separation of church and state being maligned, misconstrued, and misunderstood. We have watched as our language, has been co-opted and cannibalized to advance political ends, resulting in disenfranchisement, apathy, and distrust.
Today, with the launch of our new awareness campaign, we are reclaiming our identity as patriots, and forging an unapologetic path forward. Together with thousands of supporters and champions, we are establishing new ground rules for engagement. We will meet and treat people – even those with differing paradigms – with respect. We will stand firmly against discrimination, oppression, and violence in any form. We will neither strip anyone of their dignity, nor allow our own dignity to be stolen. And we will insist that truth, justice, patriotism are a destination at which we can only arrive together as Americans.