Skip to main content

United States Constitution preamble and beginning of Article I
Not to be confused with the Declaration of Independence or that movie "Independence Day"
The Constitution, holiest of all non-holy documents, is at this moment exactly 225 years old. How much do Americans know about it?

Cynical bastards might say "not much," but I'm actually impressed with these 2011 poll results dug up by Brian Resnick. Almost 40 percent of Americans can name the three branches of government, so that's something, right?

Other fun facts:

  • A third of Americans could not name any of the branches of government. This suggests that brand sponsorship might help with things. People are quick to remember brand names, so surely more people would remember "the legislative branch" if it were called the NASCAR-Taco Bell Legislative Cirque Du Votee or some such.
  • About 80 percent of Americans know the first 10 amendments to the Constitution are called the "Bill of Rights." Three percent answered "The Magna Carta," and about one percent said they were the "Contract With America," which is just creepy unless your poll sample included Newt Gingrich.
  • A total of 42 percent of Americans can identify jury duty as being required only of U.S. citizens. A total of 18 percent said only U.S. citizens have to "obey the law," so maybe that's where some of the paranoia against immigrants comes into play? ("Look out, he's an immigrant! He can murder you and print his own money!")

Happy Anniversary, Constitution. Hope you don't spend the next 225 still riding around in a crazy person's pocket.

Tags

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site