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Page:Catholic Encyclopedia, volume 17.djvu/53

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AMERICAMIZATION 37 AMERICANIZATION

of American citizenship may be acquired, but it the subject of civics had been universally neglected did not overlook the native tongue as a vehicle and that only 10 per cent of the elementary school of expression of democracy and of Americanism, graduates eventually reach high school, where the It recognized that sympathy, interest, and the subject is formally taught, the directors of the manifestation of a spirit of real brotherhood, on N. C. W. C. campaign brought about the introduc- the part of the native-bom American toward the tion of a simple course in patriotism and civics foreign-born were necessary if the aims contem- in the 6551 Catholic elementary schools. The "Fund- plat^ by the Americanization movement were amentals of Citizenshin." a short text explaining to be attained; that a greater knowledge by the the A B C's of our American democracy, and the native-bom of the immigrant groups in America— "Civics Catechism," a question-and-answer exposi- of their racial characteristics, of their patriotic tion of the rights and duties of American citizens, struggles for democracy at home was required ; that were widely used both in the Catholic schools and their racial contributions to the literature, art, in community Americanization work. These texts sciences, and general culture of the world, as well were also reproduced in installments in the leading as the spiritual richness of their national lives, must Catholic papers and periodicals of the country ana be taken into consideration. This school reflected, in many secular newspapers as well, thereby reach- and in fact was greatly influenced, bjr the Catholic ing millions of our population. The "Catechism" attitude toward the work of Americanization as was published in the language of several of the evidenced by nation-wide campaigns for better leading nationalistic groups, the Enelish text^ ap- citizenship carried on by the National Catholic pearing in parallel column form with the foreign War Council and the Knights of Columbus, the trandation, thereby permitting the stranger to read two organizations recognized by the United States in his own language of the privileges, opportunities Government as the ofiicial agencies of the Catholic and rights of American citizenship, the process of Church in welfare activities growing out of the naturalization, and at the same time to obtain war. Through lectures delivered by such well a knowledge of the English language. Many for- known men as Dr. James J. Walsh, Conde B. Palles, eign-language publications co-operated in printing Peter Collins, Joseph Scott, and David Goldstein, both the English and foreign-language texts of these the Knights of Columbus, with the co-operation two pamphlets. There was employed effectively a of their 2000 councils, carried on an effective cam- series of motion picture programs, utilizing short- paign against Bolshevism, Socialism, and other reel subjects which visualized the opportunities of forms of radicalism. The Knights of Columbus America, industrially and educationally, and pro- night-schools and correspondence courses were vided entertaining pictures of a patriotic, dramatic sources of constructive Americanization work, and educational character. The motion picture fea- There is grave need to defeat the destructively anti- tures were moat successfully employed in industrial American propaganda, which is carried out under centers where large populations of immigrants were the cloak of re-writing American history more ac- found. The "Speakers* Outline of Talks on Citizen- curately, and in order to do this effectively the ship" instructed speakers in the .preparation and Knights of Columbus have planned the publication delivery of short talks, both in Englisn and in the of a standard American history, in which the story native language of the group, dealing with the simple of America will be told for Americans and the facts of government, and set forth full instructions traditions of America perpetuated. to pastors, community leaders and others for or-

The nation-wide program of the National Catholic ffanizing civic education activities. Educational War Council, jointly directed by John A. features contributed by the foreign-bora groups Lapp, LL.D., a well known authority in the field themselves added to the appeal and interest of of civics, and by the writer of this article, was these entertainments.

likewise a positive and constructive movement in In all the Americanization work of the N.C.W.C. behalf of better citizenship. The N. C. W. C. pro- it was pointed out: that the success of a democracy gram was based on the following principles: that depends on knowledge, moral character and reli- every youth should have before leaving school ade- gious faith ; that the Catholic Church has always quate training in the duties, obligations and rights taught the fundamentals of good citizenship and of citizenship, to which end such training should be emphasized the social rights and responsibilities given in the elementary grades; that a broad pro- of citizens; that in all teaching of civics it should |jam of instruction in social science should be given be kept in mind that religion supplies the only m the high schools and colleges for the development adequate and stable as well as the nighest and the and more extensive training of civic leaders; that noblest motives for the discharge of civic obliga- all persons, native or immigrant, who had not had tions; and that our democracy cannot long endure courses in citizenship, should have the opportunity unless all the people are animated by motives of of taking such courses in order better to fulfil their religion in their dealings with one another. Citizen" obligations to the community ; that immigrants who ship was defined as "our duty to God, fulfilled in come to this country with the intention of staying our care and solicitude for our country whose wel- for any great length of time should assume their fare God has placed in our hands." The Catholic part of the common burdens of society by seeking j^rogram pointed out America to the foreigner as citizenship and by performing the tasks of citizen- a land of freedom and of opportunity. It told ship with understanding; ana finally, that develop- the American-born that a knowledge of the consti- ment of individual character, the teaching of correct tution is necessarv if he is to become a desirable morsJ principles, and the inculcation of religion are citizen, and that this knowledge is equally necessary essential to the making of good citizens. A series to the foreign-born if he is to take up the task of Americanization pamphlets, the total issue of of faithful citizenship. It pointed out that a demo- which exceeded one million copies, was widely used cratic government is not secured simply by as- in explaining the piinciples underlying the adminis- suming the name, but that democracy demands tration of our American Government, the privileges, a knowledge and sense of responsibility, respect for opportunities, rights and duties of American citi- human rights, and personal interest in the affairs sens, the process of naturalization and the means of eoverament.

of acquiring citizenship. The Catholic program of Americanization, there-

Realizing that in the elementary school ^stem fore, emphasized four practical aspects of the work