Requiring basic civics knowledge should be no-brainer

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

It's not really fair to judge people by the way they react when a TV crew points a camera at their face and asks questions like "Would you like to congratulate North Korea on their detonation of a hydrogen bomb?" Or, "Do you support Hillary Clinton's proposal to implement Sharia law?"

Unsuspecting passers-by provide great entertainment as they attempt to answer those types of questions on Jimmy Kimmel's "Lie Witness News" segments and similar YouTube videos, but they do make a more serious point.

Many of us don't know basic facts about the world in general and our country in particular.

Sen. Bob Krist of Omaha has taken up the cause of the Joe Foss Institute, which succeeded in persuading legislatures in Idaho, Utah, Arizona, North Dakota, South Dakota, Louisiana, Wisconsin, Tennessee and South Carolina to require basic citizenship knowledge before students can graduate from high school.

Under Krist's proposal, students would have to answer at least 70 percent of the U.S. citizenship test questions correctly to graduate. If passed, it would go into effect during the 2017 school year, helping the Joe Foss Institute reach is goal of having similar legislation in all 50 states by that year.

Schools have shifted their efforts toward STEM classes -- science, technology, engineering and math -- and that's important for our country to remain competitive.

But it's just as important for those newly-minted scientists, engineers and mathematicians to have a basic knowledge of our Constitution and their duty as American citizens.

Only 23 percent of eighth-graders who took the National Assessment of Educational Progress exam scored well enough to be considered proficient in civics last year, and 26 percent were considered "below basic," according to the U.S. Department of Education.

"Teaching to the test" has fallen out of favor with many aspects of the "No Child Left Behind" law, but testing to prove a student has received a basic civics education is a no-brainer.

But how qualified are you to be a U.S. citizen? Try a practice citizenship test here: http://1.usa.gov/1PppgX6 to find out.

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  • If you've seen the movie, or read the book, entitled, 'The Time Machine,' though, few would take notice, remember the lifestyle of the "Ennui."

    They were the 'beautiful,' have a good time, group, where everything they needed was provided, food, and clothing, and their days were spent lolling around, playing games, and primary function, it seems, is to laugh as often as possible. Little did they know, nor care, that there were bad people living, underground, that, harvested, and dined, on Ennui.

    I don't want to tell the whole story, but, what I see our young folk turning into, is 'Ennui.' (look it up in a Tomb Dictionary) ...

    The wealthy are building underground Cities, and the poor, are being 'dumbed-down,' to a point that all they need is something eat, wear, and have fun with, and they are happy to be happy, but dumb, in the sense of being Self-Reliant.

    There is another book that comes to mind, but,

    I'll save that for another day,

    when I've something more to say,

    About the day's of the coming, 'Son,'

    When in blink of eye. we're gone, 'Race Won.'

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    -- Posted by Navyblue on Fri, Jan 15, 2016, at 5:11 PM
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