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A Message from the Institute Chairman

Drop cap C.bmp (9174 bytes)ommunitarians believe with America’s Founding Fathers that it is possible to build the good society based upon the core values of the American people as defined by the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights. The values that define the American community include the belief that the society should provide its citizens with equality of opportunity, material well being, and the opportunity for individual self-fulfillment, and that it should operate on the principles of fairness, justice and compassion.

     Communitarianism springs from the recognition that the human being is by nature a social animal as well as an individual with a desire for autonomy. Communitarians recognize that a healthy society must have a correct balance between individual autonomy and social cohesion. Much recent thinking has focused on an assumed conflict between the rights of the individual and the responsibilities of the government. When you put "community" back into the equation, you find that the apparent conflict between the individual and the government can be resolved by public policies that are consistent with core American values and work to the benefit of all members of our society.

Norton Garfinkle
Chairman,
George Washington University
Institute for Communitarian
Policy Studies


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