Most definitions of “good citizenship” or “responsible citizenship” as is the case here are characterized by passive denotations: “pleasant, kind, willing, respectful, considerate and helpful.” Although I agree that each of these facets are important to develop one’s self and to establish a better society as a whole, they are but potential prerequisites for what is substantially a much more imperative necessity in the realms of self-actualization and responsible citizenship – an active pursuit of justice. Unfortunate as it may be, it appears that we have lost the meaning of justice, or perhaps it was never found it a substantial far-reaching capacity. We remain diligent in our efforts to, instead of maintain/establish justice, forgo it for what is a much more shallow and ill-fated desire – “harmony amongst adults.”
As Teddy Roosevelt once stated, “If I must choose between peace and righteousness, I chose righteousness.” A responsible citizen is one for whom takes into perspective and active pursuit what effects and/or causes harm to all those around her and subsequently takes appropriate action, as necessary, to respond to these matters. All the while it often seems that harmony may be the best route, as to preserve respectfulness and pleasantness, they are not and have never been the arbiters of justice. Justice, as it is, knows of no bounds beyond what is permissible morally and ethically. The great justice advocates of our age and ages prior, whilst were characterized by these adjectives often, were also known to forgo harmony for what was right.
-Jonathan L. Davis, TCU Student