Citizenship, Media & Social Responsibility Theory
Definition of Citizenship
Citizenship involves the position of being a citizen in a particular country, having the right to work, vote, pay taxes, and have certain rights within that country. In order to have citizenship, one should meet certain legal requirements, and certain rights and privileges are also granted. As a citizen, one is supposed to obey the laws of the country; the citizen has the right to vote, collect unemployment benefits, and have access to health care and education as well. Michaelis (2014) argues that citizenship also implies the citizen’s relationship with the community in which he/she lives. It is therefore also to do with behavior and how the citizen acts socially. The author further argues that paying taxes and voting does not make the person a good citizen; rather, it is about how the individual acts morally. He/she should care about others, conserve natural resources, be part of creating a better community and show concern for others. Being a good citizen starts at home, and it is important for parents to teach good morals and values to their children. Children should be encouraged to be proactive and be a good example to others. This will ensure that they will become good citizens and treat others with respect. This section defines the concept of citizenship in the modern society across the many countries in the world.
Theories, Principles & Social Responsibility Theory
Beaugrand (2006) suggested that the Islamist claims that representative and democracy elections are not compatible with Islamic law; it supports the existence of democracy. Many theories have argued that Islam is compatible with democracy, since every culture is developed through independent models of democratic government. The different Islamic movements have taken into consideration the concept of democratic discouragement to improve the nature of nationality and citizenship in the Gulf regions. Also, the growing popularity of post-colonialism and post-modernism influences the nature of Islamism in resolving the different political strategies (Sater, 2014). Thus, political activities influence the nature of addressing the negative perceptions in foreign cultures. The Islamists have also explored the idea of Western cultural growth in accommodating the Western ideas to resolve their differences. This relates to the legitimacy of political Islam that is built on democratic ideologies and political processes.
According to Moghadam (2003), the normative media theory covers significant social-political principles that govern the nature of the relationship between media and the society. The theory emphasizes on the obligations of the media to promote values and social coexistence in the society. Sejersen (2008) states that the media should collaborate with the various social and political structures in the Gulf region. In the European liberal principles, theoretical arguments are covered under the rights of equality and freedom in the legislations. The different cultures usually possess different principles. Other variants principles in the normative theory include the Authoritarian theory. The authoritarian theory usually applies to the pre-democratic societies in the modern world. It suggests that the media and public communication should be targeted towards improving supervision and free expression of opinions as established by the various social and political structures in the society. Similarly, the free press theory emphasizes on the need for the government to allow for public expression and proper functioning markets (Baydoun, Maguire, Ryan & Willett, 2012). The theories and principles are usually significant in creating strong connections between the role of media, political groups, and the social responsibility in the society.
The integrative social contract theory also builds relevant suggestions on the relationship between the social contract traditions. Its arguments are built on philosophical arguments. It assumes that there are exists social contracts individuals, firms, and the entire society. The nature of the social contracts calls for indirect responsibility of the individuals towards the society. Further, the integrative social contract theory takes into account the various empirical and normative aspects of the organizations. It reveals that social responsibilities are voluntary. The macrosocial contract concept implies the nature of the rules used in social contracting. The rules are commonly known as hyper-norms. They help in creating significant attitudes and behaviors among the citizens in the community.
Based on past literature and scholarly work, Islam forms a major component of modern state and society in different Gulf States. Capriotti and Moreno (2007) suggested that strong Muslim faithful seek to support the opinion that Islam brings about democracy in the society. Western scholars developed traditional theories to study the nature of Islam and citizenship in the Gulf countries. Some media findings indicate that among the Western scholars, politics offers strong will among the citizens in the Arab countries. Among Islamists, the motivation was based on the nature and objectives of the Islamic groups and movements, including the Muslim Brotherhood (Beaugrand, 2006). The balance of social responsibility can be achieved through the various political leaders and managers. This is based on the idea of converging the political, religious, and philosophical concepts in the society.
Citizenship in Arab, Gulf States and Kuwait
According to Kinninmont (n.d.) the definition of citizenship varies and evolves between countries over time. The author argues that this is also true for how it is acquired, and what the rights and responsibilities are. In Arab and Gulf states, citizens usually get economic benefits of the country’s wealth. This includes free public transport, education, subsidies, and no taxes to be paid at all. If we look at Kuwait, bidoons are excluded from citizenship, as they are not original citizens in Kuwait. It is believed that they are illegal immigrants from Saudi Arabia or Iraq. They are therefore excluded from the benefits received by citizens and only granted residency. Expats in Kuwait are given residencies and not citizenship. Citizenship in Kuwait is granted by the Minister of Interior, and the applicants must satisfy the requirements. Kuwait does not also recognize dual citizenship (Buckley, 2013). In Oman, the process of becoming a citizen is similar to Kuwait. In Saudi Arabia, all citizens are Muslims and have to obey the rules and regulations of the country. You will not be granted citizenship as a foreigner, unlike in Western countries. The same applies to most other Gulf countries.
The Role of Media
The media plays a significant role in enforcing and eliminating citizenship among the different countries. First, media provides increased literacy on the significance of registering citizens in the different countries. Media uses various political advertising patterns that campaigns for effective monitoring and information on citizenship. The different media has been able to enhance the literacy of the citizens and leaders enhancing citizenship. Most important, media enhances awareness and choice of media towards supporting the registration of citizens (Sater, 2014). It provides critical reading skills, which changes the traditional understanding on citizenships. This forms one of the valuable gains towards enhancing citizenship in the countries. In addition, media analyses the nature of the political, social and cultural aspects in the society. This promotes adequate knowledge to the media institutions to spread information on citizenship.
The media has also given an opportunity to the citizens to participate actively in the various policy formulations. The media usually mobilizes for the public opinions on the various issues affecting the society. The media campaigns are effective in promoting social actions and awareness in the society. The social media has also enhanced political participation, in which the citizens relied on their perceptions and ideas relating to citizenship and political campaigns. Through the media, the government has been able develop universal polices and structures that accommodates all citizens in their nationality programs (Capriotti & Moreno, 2007). The media has been able to impacts on the national and global dimensions of citizenships in the society. It also changes the nature of political contexts through practical conditions of the community. The persistence of the media has helped to shape various policies and regulations in the Gulf countries.
Citizenship & Islam, Culture & Tradition
Islam explains citizenships through the basic rights and duties defined by Prophet Muhammad. The main concept is social contract that is indicated in Islam to define citizenship. Quran insists on the need for people to fulfill their obligations and roles in the contracts. Many Muslims stills debates the ability of the non–Muslims to be accepted in the Gulf countries. Most intelligent Muslim scholars have suggested that Islam is not a religion of isolation, but a religious belief that promotes justice and peace among its citizens and non-citizens (Lavergne, 2007). The compatibility of Islam with the requirements of political liberalism also questions the contributions of Islam in citizenship. The symbols of nationalism in the Islamic cultures include family, items related to the historical background, and images of the rulers. Also, the images and ideas related to the nomadic and other historical trade events forms strong symbols in Muslim region.
The culture and traditions of the Gulf countries can also be explained by the nature of marriages, family and kinships. Many of the marriages in the region are usually arranged. The parents usually find for potential grooms for their children. Thus, most of the marriages are formed between people with same backgrounds. However, people are required to obtain official permission and authorization to marry non-citizens. The kingship units form a large group of the lineage in the society (Rizzo, Meyer & Ali, 2007). The families maintain close relationships with the families as the women remains in the father’s lineage. The religious beliefs of many citizens is based on the Muslims community. The minority religion in the community faces increased discrimination such as the increased tension against the Shia Muslims. However, the religious differences are rarely discussed.
The Islamic law defines the culture and traditions of the Gulf countries. The Islamic law provides comprehensive laws and principles that control the behaviors of the Muslims and their interactions with other people. Shariah also governs the nature of groups, social and economic relationship in the society. Since, it has developed relevant social actions and frameworks for enhancing governance of the different states. First, Shariah develop the styles of worshipping Allah including fasting, charity and prayers (Kamali, 2009). This designs the comprehensive pattern of the lives of the Muslims. The foundations of the Islamic law cultures indicate the principles of individuals. Thus, the Islamic law was effective in meeting the various objectives in the society including education of the people, oppression and life hardships.
Laws & citizenship in the Gulf States
The legal concept of citizenship forms part of international recognition processes among the different sovereign states. However, the nature of legal citizenship differs among the different countries. It is very difficult obtain citizenship among the various GCC states. After the inception of the Arab uprisings in 2011, the question of citizenship, the rights and responsibilities of citizens in the Gulf countries intensified. The debates over citizenship indicate the desire to understand the political factors and rights and dignity of the citizens. On the other hand, the gulf government continues to develop different concepts of citizenship. The legal development of citizenship is directed by Gulf constitutions to be equal among all the citizens.
Many organizations including the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) government have made strong efforts through the establishment of cultural and social identity projects to promote citizenship in the countries. Some of projects include the citizenship education among schools, civil society and political activism in the society. The legal, political and economic development of citizenship by the various Gulf regimes is designed to offer incentives to the various gulf citizens. This supports their states towards creating strong transnational Islamic identities. Based on the political privileges of the Gulf citizens, Buckley (2013) suggests that the establishment of Kuwait Parliament in the late 1963 was developed to support Arab nationalism. However, the strength of Arab nationalism was weakened by various factors including the increased level of economic inequality among the different Arab countries. The Arab defeat in 1967 war with the Israelis also limits the nature of naturalization.
In the late 20th century, the gulf region was economically strong compared to other neighboring countries. In spite of the economic growth, the Gulf region did not have adequate labor force and thus, it was forced to hire foreigners. Thus, many foreigners immigrated to the region in search for work relying on the migration policies. However, there was the major question of the delineation between the citizens and non-citizens. The procedures of getting nationality were very strict leading to many people being unable to gain citizenships in the gulf countries. The strict nationality laws were able to enhance retroactive control over the migration of foreigners in the gulf region (Buckley, 2013). For example, in Kuwait, two different nationality laws were adopted in the last decade. The first nationality legislation was implemented during the British protectorate in 1948. During this period, nationality was not a major issue since people were using their old customers in classifying themselves and forming allegiance to their states. It stated that the Kuwaitis subjects were ruling family members who were permanently residing in Kuwait from the late 1899, their children and Muslims fathers with Kuwait birthrights.
The concept of naturalization was only acceptable after working 10 years in Kuwait and after being Arabic proficiency. The second law in 1959 made naturalization limited to fifty people in a years (Lavergne, 2007). In addition, additional amendments made naturalization requirements tougher. Many gulf countries use the similar pattern of nationality laws in determining the inhabitants of the city-states who are required to prove their residence and loyalty to the sheikdom. The lack of documentary records and fears of allowing opportunists in the gulf countries questioned the nationality statutes. The decisions for giving people citizenships in the countries either legal or in practice was to be discretionary (Bank, Richter & Sunik, 2013). When the Gulf States gained independence, the practice of free movements across the Persian Gulf was replaced with regulated migrations that require modern legal tools including residency permits, visas, and nationality. This formed the main tools of migration control attributable to the modern state.
In conclusion, as a citizen of a country, you should be loyal, follow the laws and act morally. Being a good citizen starts at home and it is important for parents to teach good morals and values to their children. Children should be encouraged to be proactive and be a good example to others. This should be taught to children so that they too will contribute to their country and be loyal and respectful citizens. There was the major question of the delineation between the citizens and non-citizens. The procedures of getting nationality were very strict leading to many people being unable to gain citizenships in the gulf countries. Shariah also governs the nature of groups, social and economic relationship in the society. Since, it has developed relevant social actions and frameworks for enhancing governance of the different states. In addition, the religious beliefs of many citizens are based on the Muslims community. The minority religion in the community faces increased discrimination. The integrative social contract theory takes into account the various empirical and normative aspects of the organizations. It reveals that social responsibilities are voluntary. Political activities influence the nature of addressing the negative perceptions in the foreign cultures. The Islamists have also explored the idea of Western cultural growth in accommodating the Western ideas to resolve their differences. Most important, many gulf countries use the similar pattern of nationality laws in determining the inhabitants of the city-states who are required to prove their residence and loyalty to the sheikdom. The lack of documentary records and fears of allowing opportunists in the gulf countries questioned the nationality statutes. Therefore, the nature of citizenship requires strong and active media participation and social responsibility.
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