Here are some more actions ordinary citizens can take in defense of our Republic:
- Support high-quality civic education, inside and outside our schools, through the college years and beyond.
- Make sure you understand what the government’s key offices are supposed to do and why and know who you can trust to monitor their performance.
- Build up our nation’s stock of generalized social trust by building good relations with your neighbors, especially those who are different from you,[i] and contributing to the community around you. Always treat everyone well with respect and fairness – in person and online.
- Vote for candidates who are knowledgeable, wise, responsive to citizens’ needs, responsive to the common interest, and propose good policy options.
[i] Ulsaner (2012) observes that integrating people of different racialized or ethnic categories is not enough to build trust – we must form some sort of relationship with them.
Excerpted from Political Trust and Distrust, Part 2 of 2. Free course. One paragraph per day.
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Image: Inaugural parade, 1981. Kenneth Hackman.