CSIS and NSI Host Civic Education Event with U.S. Supreme Court Justices Sonia Sotomayor and Neil M. Gorsuch
April 9, 2021
WASHINGTON, April 9, 2021: The Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) Defending Democratic Institutions Project and the National Security Institute (NSI) at George Mason University’s Antonin Scalia Law School are pleased to host an event on the national security imperative of civic education, with Justice Sonia Sotomayor and Justice Neil M. Gorsuch. The online event recording will be released on April 14, 2021 at 1:00 p.m. ET.
“Civic education must be prioritized as a national security imperative,” said Dr. John J. Hamre, CSIS president and CEO. “To counter today’s threats facing our country, we need a civically informed and engaged citizenry. We are honored to have Justice Sotomayor and Justice Gorsuch speak to this topic of vital importance.”
This conversation comes at a time when liberal democracies around the world are facing a crisis of confidence, and authoritarian regimes are working to threaten the foundational premise of the rule of law. Suzanne Spaulding, director of the CSIS Defending Democratic Institutions Project, and Jamil N. Jaffer, director and founder of NSI, will moderate the discussion with Justice Sotomayor and Justice Gorsuch. Event partners include iCivics, the Law and Liberty Center at GMU, and the American Bar Association (ABA) Standing Committee on Law and National Security.
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“There is an urgent need to rediscover our shared values, relearn the fundamentals of our constitutional republic, and re-form a sense of civic identity and commitment in our communities and across the nation,” said Spaulding. “As the chief justice emphasized in his 2019 Year-End Report, the judiciary has an important role to play in civic education. These justices clearly share that view, and we are grateful that they have carved out time for this important conversation.”
“Ensuring that our nation is united around a strong civic culture is critical to our national security,” said Jaffer. “At a time when our nation faces significant threats from abroad in the form of disinformation and misinformation designed to undermine our democracy and the rule of law, as well as major issues at home that resulted in an actual insurrection at our nation’s capital, it is all the more critical that our citizens, particularly young people, are educated in the principles and mores of a free and democratic society. To paraphrase Ben Franklin, this republic only remains ours as long as we can keep it, and we are glad to have two distinguished jurists here to discuss these challenges in the modern era.”
The event recording will be posted on the CSIS and NSI websites, and is made possible by Craig Newmark Philanthropies to CSIS and general funds to the National Security Institute.
The Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) is a bipartisan, nonprofit policy research organization dedicated to advancing practical ideas to address the world’s greatest challenges.