When convening this Town Hall, the prevailing perception was that Arizona was faced with a substantial, sometimes dramatic, decline in values, ethics and personal responsibility. Against this backdrop of perceived decline, along with the challenge of reaching a consensus on how to improve our values, ethics and personal responsibility, 163 community leaders from around the state gathered at the Grand Canyon from October 29 to November 1,2000. Town Hall members identified a definite shift in ethics and morals; while improvements were found to have occurred in some areas, declines were evident in others. Areas of improvement were perceived at a social and institutional level, but Town Hall participants observed a serious decline in personal responsibility and accountability. They found an increase of selfishness to be evident, along with a general trend of financial gain becoming more important than moral values. Following are just a few of the recommendations from the 77th Town Hall, highlighting the fields of government, education, the media and business and also outlining the personal responsibility statement that was adopted at the conclusion of the Town Hall.
Personal Responsibility Statement
Society needs a greater emphasis on positive values and ethics. Too often, people are reluctant to take a stand, opting instead to wait for others to provide ethical leadership. I recognize that I must take a stand, that I should not "pass the buck," and that I have a personal obligation to provide ethical leadership to others.
Accordingly, I state the following:
In summary, personal responsibility starts with me.