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S.C.R. 2 Enrolled






Chief Sponsor: John L. Valentine

House Sponsor: Kevin S. Garn

             7      Cosponsors:
             8      Allen M. Christensen
             9      Gene DavisJon J. Greiner
David P. HinkinsScott D. McCoy
Ralph Okerlund              10     
             11      LONG TITLE
             12      General Description:
             13          This concurrent resolution of the Legislature and the Governor urges the people of
             14      Utah to return to fundamental principles that will lead to greater civility and respectful
             15      public discourse.
             16      Highlighted Provisions:
             17          This resolution:
             18          .    urges the people of Utah to return to fundamental principles that will lead to greater
             19      civility and a new spirit of community; and
             20          .    invites all Utahns to join the Legislature and the Governor in affirming established
             21      ground rules for respectful public discourse and behavior.
             22      Special Clauses:
             23          None
             25      Be it resolved by the Legislature of the state of Utah, the Governor concurring therein:
             26          WHEREAS, the Utah Constitution, Article I, Section 27 states, "Frequent recurrence to
             27      fundamental principles is essential to the security of individual rights and perpetuity of free
             28      government";
             29          WHEREAS, the Utah Constitution, Article I, Section 1 observes that, among our

             30      "inherent and inalienable" constitutional rights is the fundamental right "to communicate
             31      freely about our thoughts and opinions";
             32          WHEREAS, we may also be "responsible for the abuse of that right";
             33          WHEREAS, there should be a renewal of respectful discourse and behavior in civic
             34      and public settings in Utah;
             35          WHEREAS, this is not an appeal for all citizens of the state simply to get along;
             36          WHEREAS, there are profound differences among Utahns, and spirited debate is a
             37      vital part of American democracy;
             38          WHEREAS, participation in American civic and public life does not require that we
             39      sacrifice our deepest convictions but that we best protect our own rights by protecting the
             40      rights of others and adhering to high ethical standards;
             41          WHEREAS, the following ground rules of civic and public engagement recognize the
             42      important place of the rights, responsibilities, and respect inherent in our civic and
             43      constitutional compact;
             44          WHEREAS, it is vital that the importance of rights and the dignity of each individual
             45      be remembered;
             46          WHEREAS, our society is founded upon the proposition that all people are born free
             47      and equal in dignity and rights, and that freedom of conscience and expression is at the
             48      foundation of our rights;
             49          WHEREAS, each of us should be responsible both in the exercise of our rights and in
             50      protecting the rights of others;
             51          WHEREAS, especially on matters of personal faith, claims of conscience, and human
             52      rights, public policy should seek solutions that are fair to all;
             53          WHEREAS, all people, especially our leaders and the media, should demonstrate a
             54      commitment to be respectful in discourse and behavior, particularly in civic and public
             55      forums;
             56          WHEREAS, respect should also be shown by being honest and as inclusive as
             57      possible, by mindfully listening to and attempting to understand the concerns of others, by

             58      valuing their opinions even when there is disagreement, and by addressing their concerns
             59      when possible;
             60          WHEREAS, public discourse can be passionate while maintaining mutual respect that
             61      reaches beyond differing opinions;
             62          WHEREAS, intimidation, ridicule, personal attacks, mean spiritedness, reprisals
             63      against those who disagree, and other disrespectful or unethical behaviors destroy the fabric of
             64      society and should not be tolerated;
             65          WHEREAS, those who engage in this behavior should be brought to light, held
             66      accountable, and should no longer enjoy the public's trust;
             67          WHEREAS, the social compact "of the people" and "by the people" is "for the people,"
             68      and each person has a responsibility to build community; and
             69          WHEREAS, on divisive issues, areas of common ground should first be explored, and
             70      effort should be given to build broad-based agreement, giving due regard to the concerns of
             71      minority points of view:
             72          NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Legislature of the state of Utah, the
             73      Governor concurring therein, being concerned about growing incivility in our civic and public
             74      settings, urge the people of Utah to return to fundamental principles that will lead to greater
             75      civility and a new spirit of community and invite all Utahns to join us in affirming established
             76      ground rules for respectful public discourse and behavior.
             77          BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that a copy of this resolution be posted on the Internet
             78      websites of the Legislature and the Governor.

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