Campaign for Community Change

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Why Citizenship Matters This Election


Donna D

President Obama used a word in his speech at the Democratic National Convention that has not been uttered much this election cycle: citizenship. He said citizenship is “the idea that this country only works when we accept certain obligations to one another, and to future generations.”
Citizenship means families will be protected from being lured by greedy banks and corporations into signing mortgages they can’t afford. Citizenship is where children from the most impoverished backgrounds have the opportunity to get a great education so they can lift themselves out of the vicious cycle of poverty.
Citizenship means senior citizens can enjoy their golden years without having to worry if essential programs like Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security are going to be yanked out from under them.
And to undocumented immigrants who have come to America looking to build better lives, a chance to become citizens on this journey President Obama laid out.
Citizenship was not mentioned at the GOP convention, where exclusiveness was the order of the day. Republicans prided themselves for touting a platform that caters to the wealthiest of Americans while excluding the rights of women, minorities and senior citizens. Their America is exclusively reserved for lobbyists and special interests and anyone with a big bank account.
As President Obama said, citizenship means we don’t leave anyone behind as we all work toward an economic recovery. We help each other, learn from our mistakes, and together we will achieve prosperity. For everyone, not just the wealthy.