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Cafe Society to discuss citizenship

By Staff | Aug 21, 2015

The Cafe Society, a part of Shepherd University’s Life Long Learning Program will hold its next discussion on Aug. 25. The focus will be on the rights and responsibilities inherent in U.S. citizenship. These weekly discussions are held from 8:30 to 10 a.m. in the Rumsey Room of the Shepherd University Student Center each Tuesday morning.

They are continuing on an informal basis through the summer break. Pre-registration is not required and there are no fees or charges.

Mike Austin, who facilitates the sessions along with Art Wineburg, commented, “Presidential candidate Donald Trump has complicated the immigration issue by arguing that the birthright provided for in the U.S. Constitution is exacerbating the situation. He is suggesting a Constitutional amendment to remove the automaticity of citizenship for anyone born in the U.S. regardless of the status of parents. It would be good to discuss what we should expect as citizens, both in terms of personal individual rights or civil liberties and also what our obligations are to the nation.”

Austin explained that the sessions are entirely focused on thorough discussions and exchanges of views on a particular topic and do not attempt to draw conclusions or pursue a particular agenda.

He commented, “All too often we take these important rights and duties for granted; only paying attention to them when we are in extremis. Trump is doing us a favor by raising this issue and perhaps forcing more forthright examination of immigration and all of its ramifications. Appropriate action has been deferred far too long. We should not sweep this one back under the rug.”

For more information contact Austin at 304-876-0598 or michael.austin@frontiernet.net.