We are happy to share this post by one of our Kansans Against Common Core moms…
One of our recent and unsung holidays is Constitution Day.
About Constitution Day and Citizenship Day
September 17 is recognized in the United States as Constitution Day and Citizenship Day. The purpose of Constitution Day and Citizenship Day is to commemorate the creation and signing of the supreme law of the land and to honor and celebrate the privileges and responsibilities of U.S. citizenship for both native-born and naturalized citizens. Federal law requires that all schools receiving federal funds hold an educational program for their students on September 17 of each year.
September 17 is Constitution Day, and we need to remind ourselves what this unique document does for us. (Remember too that it is not a “living and breathing” document as some would have you believe. The framers realized that there may come a time where the document must change, and so they created the amendment process. That is a lengthy and difficult procedure, but it is so for a reason. The law of the land should not be changed on a whim or at the will of only a few, for example.) An American citizen’s rights and responsibilities are delineated in the Constitution our founding fathers created in the late 1700s (1791, to be specific for the Bill of Rights) after we became an independent nation. Among those guaranteed freedoms, of course, is the right to lawful assembly and the right of free speech, and the right to own and bear arms which many other nations do not guarantee to their citizens. (Thus the unrest, unruliness, and complete disregard for Americans when we exercise such rights, even if it may (or may not) be in poor judgment. Essentially, we have “it,” they don’t, and they don’t understand or respect “it” anyway.)
In keeping with Constitution Day, I urge each one of you to take a few minutes to review the Constitution, if you have not done so recently. It is always refreshing to realize how very lucky we are. You can get a free pocket Constitution at www.Heritage.org, and no, I’m not affiliated with them and so I don’t get a check for sending you there, or anywhere (sounds like a Dr. Seuss story!) Talk about it with whomever will listen, starting with your own kids. While school is just fine, it is our responsibility as parents to educate our kids on such things in the manner in which we see fit.
Do you remember having to learn the Preamble to the Constitution in about seventh grade? Do any of you still know it? I do and this is how. It may be a little silly, but it is fun and so if you have a few minutes, watch the old School House Rock video on You Tube.
School House Rock Preamble: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TMyfGo-Pv58
Here is also a modern version rap of the Bill of Rights: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I7RxrQJrdh4
Also, I challenge you to take a few quizzes for fun. They are fast.
Founding Fathers Quiz
Declaration of Independence Quiz
I have one other thing that I like to do around this time. I like to look at some of the words of our founders and think about them and ask if we are living by them today. Below, there are several quotations from Thomas Jefferson (who was actually serving in France at the time the Constitution was written, but who had great thoughts and opinions that we can all learn from today). Copy and paste one into the open forum and give your thoughts. Here we go:
“Experience hath shewn, that even under the best forms of government those entrusted with power have, in time, and by slow operations, perverted it into tyranny.”
“It is incumbent on every generation to pay its own debts as it goes. A principle which if acted on would save one-half the wars of the world.”
“I predict future happiness for Americans if they can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of them.”
“In matters of style, swim with the current; in matters of principle, stand like a rock.”
Have a Great Constitution Day!