Rights and Responsibilities
What Is One Promise You Make When You Become a United States Citizen

What is one promise you make when you become a United States citizen?

When an individual becomes a United States citizen, they make several promises as part of the Oath of Allegiance. These promises include:

  • Renouncing Loyalty to Other Countries: New citizens pledge to "absolutely and entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state, or sovereignty." This means they give up any loyalty or allegiance they may have held towards their country of origin or any other foreign entity.
  • Defending the Constitution and Laws of the United States: Citizens promise to "support and defend the Constitution and laws of the United States of America against all enemies, foreign and domestic." This involves protecting the principles, rights, and freedoms outlined in the Constitution and upholding the laws of the country.
  • Obeying the Laws of the United States: Citizens commit to "bear true faith and allegiance to the same" and to "obey the laws of the United States of America." This means they will follow federal, state, and local laws, and fulfill their civic duties as law-abiding citizens.
  • Serving in the U.S. Military (if needed): The oath includes a promise to "serve the United States Armed Forces" if required by law. While not all citizens may be called upon to serve, this commitment signifies a readiness to defend the country if necessary.
  • Serving the Nation (if needed): In addition to military service, citizens also promise to "perform work of national importance under civilian direction" if required by law. This can encompass various forms of public service or essential roles during times of national emergency or crisis.
  • Loyalty to the United States: Citizens express their loyalty and allegiance to the United States, pledging to "bear arms on behalf of the United States" and to "perform noncombatant service in the Armed Forces of the United States when required by the law."

These promises collectively demonstrate the commitment of new citizens to their new country, its Constitution, laws, and the well-being of the nation as a whole.