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Core democratic values refer to the constitutional principles and fundamental beliefs in the American society and form the basis of uniting the American people. The democratic values are stated in Declaration for independence, in the Constitution, and in other significant speeches, documents and nation’s writings. Every democratic political system must uphold and respect the democratic values in order to govern the people. The core democratic values can be divided into two fundamental believes also known as core democratic values of elementary students and the constitutional principles. The fundamental believes are as follows:
1 Right to Life: Every person has the right to live. No individual has the right to take another person’s life, unless it is done in self-defense or incase of exceptional cases in law.
2 Liberty: This encompasses political freedom, personal freedom, and economic freedom. The right to liberty means that people have the freedom to form groups in accordance with the law. Additionally, the people have the freedom to convey their own beliefs and opinions in public. Personal freedom means that the people have the right to think and act without influence from the government. In accordance with political freedom, every individual in a society has the right to suffrage; while economic freedom means that people can trade private property freely.
3 Pursuit of Happiness: It is the right of the American peopleto seek for happiness in whatever way they see fit, on condition that do not infringe or interfere with other people’s rights.
4 Common Good: The public good requires that the Americans develop the culture of commitment and motivation. The people should promote the community welfare by working together as a society for the benefit of all.
5 Justice: The rule of law should be applied without discrimination. When taking a decision, the interpretation of the Constitution by the court should be done in a way that ensures that justice is served to both the defendant and plaintiff in case of a civil wrong and to the accused and accuser in case of a criminal wrong. Additionally, the benefits and burdens of the community should be fairly apportioned.
6 Equality: All the American people are entitled to political, social, legal and economic equality, unless such rights have been denied by the rule of law. This implies that every person is entitled to fair treatment despite sex, race, religion, economic, or heritage status.
7 Diversity: The differences in religion, culture, dress, heritage and language should be tolerated, celebrated, and preserved as strength.
8 Truth: The people have the right to information. The government has the duty of disclosing information to the public and carrying its operations in a transparent and credible way.
9 Popular Sovereignty: It is important to know that power belongs to the people. Therefore, the government of the day should be the one that has been ultimately chosen by the people.
10 Patriotism: The people are expected to demonstrate love for their country. They should not betray their country to enemies. Additionally, they should work hard for the stability of the economy of their country.