After the 2020 election. I nearly shut down The Citizen Within. It felt like the temperature was coming down. That things might return to normal.

But this week, it became abundantly clear that I was wrong.

The United States is coming apart at the seams.

Between the insurrection and rioting at the Capitol, to the banning of the president from social media, we’ve just entered an uncertain new age.

I have little doubt things will devolve into further chaos, disillusion, and violence.

That is, unless we revive a healthy, engaged citizenry. And do the hard work necessary to pull ourselves back from the brink.

In talking with friends this week, it became clear that I have a moral imperative to run this site, and to run it well.

I can’t hide from this obligation. I can’t leave the work to others.

If our goal is to revive America, we all have a role to play. Every last one of us.

My role is here, writing about the essence of citizenship, and spreading the ideas and tools we need for healing, reconciliation, and future prosperity.

I’m not an expert, or a think tanker, or a politico, or any of the people who tend to write about this stuff.

I’m just a guy who genuinely loves the founding ideals of America, and wants to see them preserved for my future children, and all generations beyond.

Now, as for what I’ll be writing about here, I’m not exactly sure yet. But there are a few things I believe with every fiber of my being that will drive the agenda.

  • To heal our nation, we must first heal ourselves.
  • Citizenship means upholding values, especially when it’s difficult.
  • The media is both part of the problem, and part of the solution.
  • No politician will ever be our savior.
  • We must abandon the culture war, as it’s a cancer.
  • Local tight-knit community is the heart of what’ll heal us.
  • The “other side” will never disappear. Respectful pluralism is the only path forward.

Let’s do this.

-Rob Hardy, January 8, 2021, Tucson, AZ