America was founded with the promise that certain liberties, freedoms and rights would be provided to all Americans. This promise lies at the foundation upon which our nation was formed. In fact, because these liberties, freedoms and rights were considered integral to creating a true democracy, they were set forth in the Constitution of the United States as cornerstone principles of our nation.
Americans are greatly divided on a number of important issues at this time in the history of our nation. The degree to which Americans value civility is tested during contentious times, and it is being tested once again.
Americans have moved past prior periods of great division with the goal of uniting Americans, a noble goal that has proven difficult to permanently accomplish.
Americans have the freedom to choose the manner in which they communicate and the purpose for their statements and actions. They can promote optimism and hope for our nation or they can provoke pessimism and distrust. They can encourage peacefulness and unity or they can incite hostility and disarray. Rude, offensive and inflammatory dialogue impedes solution-based discussion, provokes disrespect and can incite incivility and acts of violence.
Americans can unite and work together for real, lasting solutions or they can remain polarized and succumb to incivility.
ARCH is calling on all Americans, including elected officials at all levels of government, members of the media, political pundits, celebrities, public figures and YOU, to pass the civility test.