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The Responsibilities of Citizenship


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I was thinking of this in light of all the topics on immigration, etc.  Immigrants seem to be very well versed on their "rights" when they get to Canada, but how many give attention t o what their "responsibilities" are as Canadian citizens?  Perhaps it's because we are quick to inform new citizens/immigrants of their "rights" and kind of gloss over the "responsibiity" part.

This is an American article but I think the same responsibilities and duties would apply here.

http://www.artofmanliness.com/2016/09/26/citizens-bill-responsibilities/

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When citizenship is mentioned at all today, it’s usually in the context of rights: “I have the right to do this!” “I have the right to do that!”

But as the manual points out, these privileges come with accompanying obligations

 

It's an interesting discussion of democracy, too, and the rights and duties of being part of one.

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A Bill of Responsibilities. You may never have thought about this concept, but such a thing inarguably exists. Membership in any group confers certain advantages, but they are contingent on each member following the group’s rules, actively participating, and contributing to the group’s health and strength.

While the privileges of the Bill of Rights are explicitly spelled out, the obligations of the Bill of Responsibilities are implicitly charged. The latter are thus easy to forget, often subsumed by an exclusive focus on the former.

Yet the continued existence of rights is premised on the fulfillment of their reciprocal responsibilities. Democracy can only flourish when people are able to govern themselves. In the absence of such self-governance, without the collective willingness to live virtuously, participate intelligently in the public sphere, perpetuate the greatest good for the greatest number, and serve each other and our communities, more and more regulations and laws must be passed to compel behavior and maintain order, curtailing liberty. Freedom paradoxically cannot endure without constraints.

 

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Democracy is thus a two-way partnership: citizens receive certain rights, services, and protections from the government, and in turn offer their money, time, knowledge, and commitment towards maintaining these privileges. Individual rights must always be matched with individual responsibilities; one cannot hope to have a healthy democracy if citizens are solely focused on what they can get, to the exclusion of what they can give.

I think it is useful, then, to pause occasionally to discuss the implicit obligations of citizenship in a more direct way — to reflect on how we measure up in our duties. As the Scout manual puts it: “the ‘Bill of Responsibilities’ is a sort of yardstick of citizenship.”

 

 

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25 minutes ago, hot enough said:

The first yardstick of "citizenship" is to shut your mouth and swallow everything your government and press feed you. Good on ya, Goddess.

Become Canadian, and assimilate right away, and stop bringing with them their culture and everything associated with that culture period. And of course the governments should not be catering to any other culture and blowing taxpayer's tax dollars on helping them to keep their culture alive but rather stick with and enforce on them Canadian culture. Hey, if they don't like it well take the next plane out. Canadians don't need or want you here. 

Of course today the governments and the media try to force Canadians to accept other cultures as part of their life now, and told to shut their mouths and swallow everything the government thinks is good for them. like diversity is our strength. When new immigrants are told that Canada is a multicultural country at swearing in ceremonies, well what can we expect from those new Canadians except gee, I have just been told that I can keep my culture, and not worry about assimilating. Canada? What a great country for new immigrants to come too, eh? :D 

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1 hour ago, Goddess said:

...This is an American article but I think the same responsibilities and duties would apply here.

 

Not quite...several of the American rights do not apply to Canada (e.g. free speech, firearms), while others are not rights at all even in the United States, just wishful thinking.    Citizen rights in the U.S. are inalienable except when restricted by law (e.g. convicted felons), regardless of any collective or individual responsibilities.

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1 minute ago, bush_cheney2004 said:

Citizen rights in the U.S. are inalienable except when restricted by law (e.g. convicted felons), regardless of any collective or individual responsibilities.

Are there responsibiities of US citizenship?

It seems like you are saying rights are given without any attendant responsibilities, or at least that the responsibilities are Meh.....not really a concern?

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5 minutes ago, bush_cheney2004 said:

 

Not quite...several of the American rights do not apply to Canada (e.g. free speech, firearms), while others are not rights at all even in the United States, just wishful thinking.    Citizen rights in the U.S. are inalienable except when restricted by law (e.g. convicted felons), regardless of any collective or individual responsibilities.

Nope, section 2 of our Charter of Rights gives us free speech, we just limit here and there to protect people from such things as hate speech. Just as we have rights to have firearms but we limit that a bit too so we don't have people blowing away vast numbers of high school students away on a regular basis. I wonder if hate speech and gun violence are somehow linked, what do ya think there? 

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6 minutes ago, Goddess said:

Are there responsibiities of US citizenship?

It seems like you are saying rights are given without any attendant responsibilities, or at least that the responsibilities are Meh.....not really a concern?

 

Yes...there are no responsibilities/requirements for U.S. citizenship beyond requisite natural birth or naturalization.

The responsibilities enumerated in the article may be civic duties, but are not legally binding in most cases, including jury duty.

Naturalized Canadian citizens actually swear allegiance to the Queen and her successors.

Edited by bush_cheney2004
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Just now, bush_cheney2004 said:

 

Yes...there are no responsibilities/requirements for U.S. citizenship beyond requisite natural birth or naturalization.

The responsibilities enumerated in the article may be civic duties, but are not legally binding in most cases, including jury duty.

I see what you're saying.

I agree it would be difficult/not appropriate to make some of these responsibiities legally binding.  I'm just wondering if there should be some responsibilities outlined and communicated to new citizens.  It would impress on them that this isn't a free ride and that they are expected to contribute certain things to their new country.

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1 minute ago, Goddess said:

.... I'm just wondering if there should be some responsibilities outlined and communicated to new citizens.  It would impress on them that this isn't a free ride and that they are expected to contribute certain things to their new country.

 

Civics was widely taught in U.S. education decades ago, but has lost favour because of social and political partisanship.   The cartoon referenced in the article was the famous 1970's Schoolhouse Rock segment: "I'm Just A Bill":

 

 

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Responsibilities are as follows, per the citizenship oath:

I swear (or affirm) that I will be faithful and bear true allegiance to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, Queen of Canada, Her Heirs and Successors, and that I will faithfully observe the laws of Canada and fulfil my duties as a Canadian citizen.

Edited by Moonlight Graham
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14 minutes ago, Goddess said:

Are those duties spelled out somewhere or they just sort of implied, like the original article points out?

I'm wondering if they should be spelled out.

 

Further to your point, do all natural born Canadian citizens swear the oath, or just naturalized citizens, Canadian Forces, government office holders, etc. ?

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1 minute ago, Omni said:

Thanks.

 

Quote

 

Citizenship Responsibilities

In Canada, rights come with responsibilities. These include:

  • Obeying the law — One of Canada’s founding principles is the rule of law. Individuals and governments are regulated by laws and not by arbitrary actions. No person or group is above the law.
  • Taking responsibility for oneself and one’s family — Getting a job, taking care of one’s family and working hard in keeping with one’s abilities are important Canadian values. Work contributes to personal dignity and self-respect, and to Canada’s prosperity.
  • Serving on a jury — When called to do so, you are legally required to serve. Serving on a jury is a privilege that makes the justice system work as it depends on impartial juries made up of citizens.
  • Voting in elections — The right to vote comes with a responsibility to vote in federal, provincial or territorial and local elections.
  • Helping others in the community — Millions of volunteers freely donate their time to help others without pay—helping people in need, assisting at your child’s school, volunteering at a food bank or other charity, or encouraging newcomers to integrate. Volunteering is an excellent way to gain useful skills and develop friends and contacts.
  • Protecting and enjoying our heritage and environment — Every citizen has a role to play in avoiding waste and pollution while protecting Canada’s natural, cultural and architectural heritage for future generations.

 

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Found this interesting article:

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/opinion/a-distinctly-canadian-oath-ill-swear-to-that/article20075956/

 

Quote

 

“I swear (or affirm) that I will be faithful and bear true allegiance to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth the Second, Queen of Canada, Her Heirs and Successors, and that I will faithfully observe the laws of Canada and fulfill my duties as a Canadian.”

That literal interpretation of the oath is what led three prospective Canadians, last year, to appeal a lower court decision upholding the oath. They argued that the pledge offends the equality provisions of the Charter of Rights by perpetuating a class system. That it violates their Charter right to freedom of expression because it constitutes compelled speech. That it amounts to religious discrimination, since the British (and hence Canadian) monarch must be an Anglican. And that it impedes the ability of a new citizen to advocate for the abolition of the monarchy.

The appeal court rejected all of these arguments, even overturning the lower court’s finding that, although the oath violates free expression, it is a “reasonable limit” as allowed by the Constitution. As Justice Karen Weiler explained in Wednesday’s unanimous decision: “Rather than undermining freedom of expression, the oath amounts to an affirmation of the societal values and constitutional architecture of this country, which promote and protect expression.”

 

I have a bit of an issue with potential citizens who try to legally change the oath before they are even citizens.  I think it's very disrespectful.  And we pay for this nonsense.

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13 minutes ago, Omni said:

I looked at that webpage with the Discover information.   I noticed it included information about what is not permitted in Canada such as barbaric cultural practices and that Canada requires the equality of women.  As I recall there was some controversy over putting this information out to immigrants when the Conservatives were in government 2006 - 2015.    I wonder if the Liberals have decided to continue to include that information for immigrants or if they have removed it.   Does anyone know?  

Liberals made a great hoopla out of the Conservatives mentioning the idea of barbaric cultural practices.  There are something like over 100 million girls who are brutalized and maimed with female genital mutilation mainly in north African countries, but there could be a small number of it in Canada or the U.S. being done on the sly.   We have no way of knowing unless someone makes an official police report and the information is made public.  Otherwise we don't know.

Edited by blackbird
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There was some request from some native rights organization to include recognition of treaties with aboriginals in the citizenship ceremony.  Does anyone know if the Liberal government decided to include it in the ceremony oath?   It would make absolutely no sense because individual citizens have nothing to do with treaties.  That is only between a level of government and native bands.  But it shows you how far some will go.

Edited by blackbird
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4 minutes ago, blackbird said:

I looked at that webpage with the Discover information.   I noticed it included information about what is not permitted in Canada such as barbaric cultural practices and that Canada requires the equality of women.  As I recall there was some controversy over putting this information out to immigrants when the Conservatives were in government 2006 - 2015.    I wonder if the Liberals have decided to continue to include that information for immigrants or if they have removed it.   Does anyone know?  

Liberals made a great hoopla out of the Conservatives mentioning the idea of barbaric cultural practices.  There are something like over 100 million girls who are brutalized and maimed with female genital mutilation mainly in north African countries, but there could be a small number of it in Canada or the U.S. being done on the sly.   We have no way of knowing unless someone makes an official police report and the information is made public.  Otherwise we don't know.

The hoopla over the issue was that the Harper gov't wanted to create their so called "snitch line" with regard to barbaric cultural practices. How easily could that be abused!

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1 hour ago, Omni said:

The hoopla over the issue was that the Harper gov't wanted to create their so called "snitch line" with regard to barbaric cultural practices. How easily could that be abused!

Don't see how it could be abused.  Unless a victim is willing to verify it and possibly have a medical examination by a doctor to verify it, there is nothing government or police can do about it.  So it can't be abused.  Another phony liberal/NDP issue.

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7 minutes ago, blackbird said:

Don't see how it could be abused.  Unless a victim is willing to verify it and possibly have a medical examination by a doctor to verify it, there is nothing government or police can do about it.  So it can't be abused.  Another phony liberal/NDP issue.

The reason it was shunned was because it became just how obviously it could be abused. How easy would it be for a bigoted neighbor to call in some bullshit like maybe the lady next door was wearing a face covering, which is one of the things Harper was trying to go after when he sought to create this nonsense. 

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3 hours ago, Goddess said:

Found this interesting article:

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/opinion/a-distinctly-canadian-oath-ill-swear-to-that/article20075956/

 

I have a bit of an issue with potential citizens who try to legally change the oath before they are even citizens.  I think it's very disrespectful.  And we pay for this nonsense.

 

They lost, so what's the issue?  Why not be pleased that our system is robust enough to be questionned?

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