American Values

In order that we might make judgments with respect to events around us, we base our decisions on "Community Values" that we have learned. Community values are modified and changed as a result of our relationships within our families, within our social institutions, within our religious organizations, and within our educational system. Our "beliefs" are based on the founded on these the experiences within these communities, overlaid by more general understandings defined by consensus in the broader communities of life.

The following is one expression of the broadest level of community values in the United States.

  1. Fairness

  2. Work

  3. Compassion for the Underdog

  4. Education

  5. Sex as an act of love

  6. Honesty

  7. Justice

  8. Winning

  9. Individual and personal responsibility

  10. Family

  11. Patriotism

  12. Religion

Reference: Webb, Charles H. "At the heart of the matter", Roanoke Times and World-News, Sunday, Oct. 10, 1993, pp. D1, D5.

Roanoke Times commentary, 99/10/10.

For another set of "Instructions for Life", click here.

For the University of Washington Core Ethical Values, click here.


In class project:

Name the five (5) basic values that you feel control the manner in which you act and on which you base your decisions.

Survey Results
Summary of results since 1997
Spring 1997
Fall 1997
Fall 1998
Spring 1999
Fall 1999
Spring 2001
Fall 2001

Last updated 2001/02/12
© J.A.N. Lee, 1995-2001.