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Civic Virtue and a Modern Hero. What is Civic Virtue? Definition: –Morality or standard of righteous behavior in society. –Derived from Greek word arete.

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Presentation on theme: "Civic Virtue and a Modern Hero. What is Civic Virtue? Definition: –Morality or standard of righteous behavior in society. –Derived from Greek word arete."— Presentation transcript:

1 Civic Virtue and a Modern Hero

2 What is Civic Virtue? Definition: –Morality or standard of righteous behavior in society. –Derived from Greek word arete or excellence. –Civic Virtue includes: Active participation in public life Trustworthiness Reciprocity (mutual exchange) that is acquired through social connectedness (all one piece)

3 An historical example of Civil Virtue Martin Luther King –Civil Rights Movement Parallels –“Aristotle holds that humans must know about these virtues before they can hope to better the community.” –“In many ways, an educated citizen who possesses civic virtue is a public good.” –“Without an understanding of civic virtue, citizens are less likely to look beyond their own families, friends and economic interests.”

4 Importance? –Aristotle: “Virtue, both civic and moral, is the way in which humans achieve their greatest happiness.” –“Civic virtue helps people understand their ties to the community and their responsibilities within it.” Without civic virtue, “disconnection from community” will cripple a society.

5 Dear Cathedral students, Like all good things worth fighting for, equality comes at a price. If I pay a higher price then my neighbor, he ought to think it not be paid in vain. Having grown up in a segregated Alabama, I have seen my fair share of injustice. Although unable to attend a white school, I pursued an education in theology. Over the years I discovered that God views man as equals. In addition, my family ties to the Baptist church led me to join the Southern Christian Leadership Conference; an organization devoted to the civil rights movement. The conference inspired me to travel the country, advocating equality to all. It was there that I studied the work of Gandhi. I have spent eleven years, and traveled six million miles preaching what I know is right, that is, equal rights for all. Throughout my journey, I have composed books, articles, manifestos and letters addressing the evils of segregation. I have written from Birmingham, spoken countless times, and I have dreamt of equality.

6 Dear Cathedral Cont… Even though I have been jailed and persecuted and discriminated against, I still stand behind my beliefs of civic virtue. Fighting for what is right is never wrong, do not feel let down in times of struggle. These groups such as the KKK and other white supremacy groups gain power from fear. We must not allow them to get to us, we shall only fear God himself. God is the ultimate judge of character and decides our true fate. If I did not believe in my message, then I would be a bigger hypocrite than any other. I believe in the rights for all people, and we can form this type of society with great morals and respect. No one is better than anyone else and we should respect each other as we do ourselves. To live a just life is what God called for; do not be afraid to be different. God is always on the side of justice. I can see that at places like Cathedral, equality for all is truly shown. I encourage each student to continue the work that I began; do not judge people by their looks, religion, or culture, but rather, get to know them for who they are and for whom they are going to become. Though this journey was not easy for me and it will not be easy for you, I hope that you will continue my dream for equality in the nonviolent way that I have taught. God Bless, Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr.

7 Letter from Martin Luther King Jr. Grew up in segregated Alabama Traveled across US preaching equality –11 years –6 million miles Became minister –Family ties to Baptist Church –Inspired to advocate equality from Southern Christian Leadership Conference

8 “Only through an understanding of civic virtue will Americans be able to flourish in their communities and play an active role in American democracy”


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