Citizen Education 101
Do you know what it means to be a citizen?
By: Jordan Perry
All citizens are entitled to specific rights that are written into the Constitution. Some of the rights are stated in the Bill of rights as amendments. The first amendment guarantees freedom of speech, press, religion, and petition. The third amendment guarantees conditions for quarters of soldiers, the next amendment which is the fourth regulates against unlawful search and seizure. The seventh amendment gives us the right to be trialed by jury and the sixth amendment the right to a fair/speedy trial. Freedom of speech, press, religion, and petition are important to me because it gives people the right to express what they want to say. Also it allows them to practice their religion or peacefully assemble. Also condition for quarters of soldiers is important because it allows no soldier in the war or not to walk into a house and spend the night without asking the homeowner. Right of search and seizure is important because it allows people to be secure with their personal belongings against unreasonable searches and seizures they should not be violated and no warrants will be issued. Right to be trialed by jury is important because it lets the jury decide if the person is guilty or not by using the facts from the judge to make the decision. Finally right to a fair/speedy trial is important because it allows all sides to have a fast and fair trial which allows the criminal to be innocent until proven guilty.
A good citizen follows their rights, duties, and responsibilities. A good citizen is one who is respectful to others, follows the law, and is involved with its community/country. Responsibilities that citizens are expected to follow are being involved with the political process such as voting or helping the candidates. Also volunteering/community service such as helping at a soup kitchen or helping the elderly. Duties that citizens are expected to follow are obeying the law and rules of the government, paying their taxes, jury duty, attend school to get an education, and defend their country when asked to.
There are terms that mean where Democrats and Republicans are on a political spectrum. Far left and Liberal mean they are on the left side of the political spectrum and they are Democrat. Far right and Conservative mean they are on the right side of the political spectrum and they are Republican.
One issue is education. On the Democrat side, Obama is trying to make college more affordable by signing into law student loan reform that ended government subsidies to big banks. Also they are working on the “No Child Left Behind” program which provides teachers with more professional support and resource, while also holding them accountable. Another thing is turning around struggling public schools; expand public options. On the Republican side, they believe that parents should be empowered to send their children to the school of their choice. Also promote school choice and home-schooling and limit role of federal government in education. Another issue is the economy. On the Democrat side, Obama is trying to strengthen the economy and create jobs for the people by ending tax loopholes for corporations and provide tax cuts to small businesses. On the Republican side, they believe in America’s free-market economy. Also they believe in promoting the confidence in the economy among buyers and business owners. They oppose policies that let the federal government have control of the industry.
The United States requires that all citizens who wish to vote must meet certain qualifications. You have to be 18 years old, a U.S. citizen, resident of town/states, and you cannot be a felon. To register to vote a citizen must fill out the National Voter Registration Form. In Chester you go to the Town Hall and get this form from the town clerk. Also you can register to vote at a polling place on Election Day or with the Supervisor of the checklist, by law they meet 10 days before the election in New Hampshire. You are required to show proof of age, domicile and citizenship; to show proof of age you can use a driver's license, passport or birth certificate. Town elections are held on the second Tuesday in May and the Presidential Primary election is held January. It is important to vote because it allows citizens to be an active part of the political process to choose who they want to be represented by and every vote could have an impact on the outcome of an election.