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Constitution Day and Citizenship Day on September 17

DKH_02Constitution Day and Citizenship Day is a combined event that is observed in the United States on September 17. This event commemorates the formation and signing of the Constitution of the United States September 17, 1787, and celebrates our American citizenship. What a great day to fly the American flag!

For an excellent overview of our Constitution see this article at the National Archives.

Citizenship Day, one of our newest federal holidays, was established and ratified by Congress on 2004.  It recognizes all who, by coming of age or by naturalization, have become US citizens.

DKH_09Oath of Allegiance is:
“I hereby declare, on oath, that I absolutely and entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state, or sovereignty of whom or which I have heretofore been a subject or citizen; that I will support and defend the Constitution and laws of the United States of America against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I will bear arms on behalf of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform noncombatant service in the Armed Forces of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform work of national importance under civilian direction when required by the law; and that I take this obligation freely without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; so help me God.”

 

In some cases, US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) allows the oath to be taken without the clauses:

“… that I will bear arms on behalf of the United States when required by law; that I will perform noncombatant service in the Armed Forces of the United States when required by law … “

If USCIS finds that you are unable to swear the oath using the words “on oath,” you may replace these words with “and solemnly affirm.” If USCIS finds that you are unable to use the words “so help me God” because of your religious training or beliefs, you are not required to say these words.

5 thoughts on “Constitution Day and Citizenship Day on September 17

  1. I didn’t even know that it was a holiday!
    Thanks!
    The History Man

    1. Thank you, Charlie; I understand about not knowing.

      I was surprised on Patriot Day, Sept.11, when I found out that another holiday had been signed into law in April 2009, also to be commemorated on Sept 11. It’s called the Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act of 2009 and here is the Presidential proclamation that addresses both occasions.

      Another official holiday that doesn’t show up on many lists or calendars—and it’s a day where the US flag is to be flown at half-staff all day—is October 4, during National Fallen Firefighters Memorial Weekend. Here is my article from last year.

      And of course, tomorrow is National POW/MIA Recognition Day.

  2. […] of a joint resolution in …Washburn Review – http://www.washburnreview.org/home/|||The Daily Flag » Blog Archive » Constitution Day and Citizenship …Constitution Day and Citizenship Day is a combined event that is observed in the United States on […]

  3. On September 17, 2009 Congressman Elijah Cummings’ Office with the assistance of the Center for Effective Policy in Government have been working to draft and introduce H.R. 3591 – ‘The Constitution and Citizenship Day Act of 2009’. On Constitution Day of each year (September 17th), this legislation will provide public and charter high schools with an incentive to expose students to the importance of the Constitution through coordinated assemblies and/or events, as well as to distribute and collect voter registration forms from eligible students of those schools pursuant to state law.

    This federal legislation will have a generational effect on the civic education of public school students across the country, and it will ultimately lead to a vast overall expansion of our nation’s electorate. This bill is patterned after SB 128, a successful piece of state legislation passed and signed into law in Maryland in 2007 under the same name. Since the passage of the state measure, the Maryland Board of Elections, between the 2006 and 2008 electoral cycles cites a 90% increase in voter registration of 17 and 18 year old new voter applicants in the state.

    Organizations and elected officials such as Common Cause, Democracy Matters, The Washington Metropolitan Council AFL-CIO, Hip Hop Caucus, the Student Association for Voter Empowerment, Governor of Maryland Martin O’Malley, co-sponsors Congressmen Kendrick Meek, (FL-17); Charles Rangel, (NY-15); John Conyers, (MI-14); Eleanor Holmes-Norton, (DC); Maxine Waters, (CA-35); Diane Watson, (CA-33); Donald Payne, (NJ-10); Melvin Watt (NC-12); Andre Carson, (IN-7) all have formally endorsed this important federal legislation that will assist new young voters in becoming fully aware of the document that binds us all in a democratic union and their responsibility within the political process. This is legislation long overdue.

    1. Thank you Chris, for this important information. Best Wishes, Deborah

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