Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Alas, Too Many Americans Don't Understand Their Own Government

Three things have become clear to me recently:

1.) A number of Americans, especially those on the right of the political spectrum, do not understand about the different powers and responsibilities of the three branches of the U.S. Federal government (legislative, executive, and judicial). They seem particularly clueless about the whole concept of checks and balances.

2.) Too few Americans, especially those on the right of the political spectrum, have actually read the U. S. Constitution, and fewer still truly understand it.

3.) America desperately needs to improve American studies and civics education, since far too many Americans seem to lack a basic understanding of how their government actually works.

Recent events indicate that some Americans are in desperate need of civics lessons. They seem to believe that personal religious beliefs trump constitutional prohibitions against the government of the United States establishing a religion. They seem to believe that government employees in the United States may use their powers to impose their religious beliefs on others. Personally, I believe in the Constitution of the United States of America (i.e. the law of the land in the U.S. of A), specifically THIS:

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion..."

I also believe in the incorporation doctrine, which says that, through the Due Process clause of the Fourteenth Amendment, select provisions of the Bill of Rights apply to state governments as well as to the Federal government.

Additionally, it's not that hard to understand the part the Supreme Court plays in the whole system of checks and balances. It's so easy kids could learn it

From the Congress for Kids site:

"...the Supreme Court may check Congress by declaring a law unconstitutional."

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