Constitutional Laws Are a Must: Don't Be Ignorant America!
If the Constitution did not exist what would America look like? Would we have a totalitarian government that rules by oppression or a government so weak that it has little impact?
We hold these truths to be self-evident that all men are created equal that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights that among these are Life Liberty and the pursuit of happiness. You may recognize these words from our Constitution. I apologize there from the Declaration of Independence. It's a common mistake. In fact, in a recent study published in the Southern California Law Review author Katie Ayer wrote that a full 84 percent of Americans believe that the declaration is famous phrase All men are created equal appears in the Constitution. How Well Do Americans understand the Constitution? Do we comprehend its importance and use our influence to ensure it is followed? The Constitution is vital to America and it is our duty to preserve it. Do Americans know the Constitution?
The 84 percent statistic I quoted moments ago was citing a 1997 survey. So, let's consider some more recent statistics. According to the Cato Institute a 2011 Newsweek survey of 1000 individuals found that 70 percent of them could not name the supreme law of the land. The Annenberg Public Policy Center of the University of Pennsylvania often administers surveys on the public's knowledge of the Constitution and government. In August of 2017 the center surveyed a thousand and 13 adults for their annual Annenberg Constitution Day civic survey. They found that thirty seven percent of those surveyed could not name any of the rights that are affirmed in the First Amendment. Furthermore, only 26 percent could name all three branches of government in their twenty eighteen civic survey. That number did go back up to 32 percent but that's still a low percentage of people that can name the executive legislative and judicial branches. And at the same time 33 percent could not even name a single branch. The 2018 survey conducted in August with a thousand and eight participants also found that 27 percent of respondents believe the Constitution allows a president to disregard a Supreme Court ruling if he disagrees with it. Or several poor survey results enough to indicate a pandemic. Perhaps not. But these examples do demonstrate that a poor understanding of the Constitution is certainly an existent problem.
One way that we can support the Constitution is by voting in particular voting for candidates that we believe will adhere to and uphold the Constitution. But many people who can vote don't vote. The Pew Research Center reported in May of 2018 that fifty-five-point seven percent of the U.S. voting age population voted in the November 2016 election. While this percentage was up from the 2012 election it ranked poorly when compared with the most recent major elections and other OPEC countries. For those countries for which data was available the US ranked twenty sixth out of thirty to. The Census Bureau found slightly better results reporting that sixty-one-point four percent of the voting age population said they voted in the November 2016 election. Regardless of which estimate is used approximately 40 percent of Americans who could be voting are choosing not to vote. In doing so, they are giving up one of the primary means by which they can support the Constitution. Why is this a problem? Why should we understand and preserve the Constitution? Why is the constitution so important? First of all, the Constitution is essential because it defines our government. The Constitution delineates the three branches of government. The role that each is to play and the checks they have on one another so that none becomes too powerful. The Constitution is the basis for how the American people are governed. If the Constitution did not exist what would America look like? Would we have a totalitarian government that rules by oppression or a government so weak that it has little impact? Thankfully we don't have either because the Constitution though not perfect protects our freedoms while also upholding laws that apply to all. The fact that the Constitution protects our rights as one of the most meaningful things about it the Constitution protects our right to freely choose and practice what religion we follow. It protects our right to speak out for what we believe. It protects the right of those accused of a crime to have a fair trial. It protects an individual's right to his or her property. It protects the right of Americans to vote in elections regardless of race or gender. Why is the Constitution important? Those are just a few of our rights that the Constitution defends from tyranny and abuse. The rationale and foundation for the government of our country is largely based off of the ideas and the Declaration of Independence. The declaration states that we hold these truths to be self-evident that all men are created equal that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights that among these are Life Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness That to secure these Rights Governments are instituted among Men deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.
The declaration states that the purpose of government is essentially to secure the moral rights that God has given mankind. This principle is embodied in the Constitution and the form of government that it established. This is really emphasized in the Bill of Rights and the constitutional safeguards against tyranny and oppression. It is clear that without the Constitution America would not be the land of the free. What then is the role of Americans today? Well we have a duty to support our Constitution. Not everyone can or should run for office but our duty to our government is to preserve the Constitution and thereby preserve our system of government to maintain the government's authority. But at the same time uphold our liberties. The Constitution is not perfect after all it was written by human beings and human beings are fallible. But the Founders gave us a way to attempt to correct the Constitution shortcomings when the constitution sanctions things that are wrong. It has and can be amended. One example of this is the 13th Amendment the 13th Amendment abolished slavery and injustice that at. That the Constitution allowed was able to be changed because the founders created an amendment process. But how do we support and preserve the Constitution. The first step is to understand it. We need to be aware of what the Constitution allows and what it prohibits. Americans need to be familiar with the supreme law of the land only once we are familiar with the Constitution. Can we vote for leaders who will support it and protect our rights? As Kathleen Jamieson director of the Annenberg Public Policy Center put it one is unlikely to appreciate or defend constitutional properties or rights. One does not understand. Becoming acquainted with the constitution enables us to act on our knowledge those who are at least 18 can exercise their right to vote. It's important to vote for leaders who be committed to the Constitution. Oftentimes when policies are proposed or passed, we see all kinds of literature from think tanks and journals and other sources attempting to analyze what effects the policy will have. How will it affect taxpayers? Will it impact national defense? Will it negatively alter the economy or will it create jobs? But how often do we analyze a policy from the perspective of whether or not it is allowed under the Constitution or whether the entity proposing it has the authority to do so. Considering the effects of a policy is important but Americans must not forget to consider its constitutionality.
By seeking to preserve the Constitution we can preserve the American system of government and also our liberties. Erwin Chemerinsky founding dean of the University of California Irvine School of Law once said ultimately a democracy can survive only if people are informed about the Constitution. The Constitution is vital to America and must be preserved. Are we informed about our Constitution? Recent surveys indicate that not all of us are but the Constitution is a document with which Americans should be concerned. It is of vital importance to our form of government and acts as a safeguard of our liberties. The Constitution has not given us a perfect form of government or protected our freedoms without fail. Yet it has done a remarkable job at preserving it is important to ensure our government and our rights are preserved as well. For this reason, we have a duty to uphold the Constitution and do what we can to elect leaders that will also uphold it. As Americans preserving the Constitution secures the blessings of liberty to ourselves. And our posterity.