A couple years ago, I was enjoying food and beverage at the local tavern (an historic former stagecoach stop in its own right) while one of the young patrons discussed a weekend visit with his girlfriend to the nearby National Constitution Center. They commented on their good fortune of being born on American soil in light of the fact that one of the exhibits showcased questions faced by immigrants subjected to the required test for obtaining US citizenship. A BloombergView article from yesterday’s newspaper reminded me of his comments, as it made an interesting argument calling for a mandate for all American school children to pass such a test.
As a former public school educator, I’m sensitive to the standardized-test-overload faced by our nation’s students and teachers. However, Bloomberg‘s idea has great merit if we were to creatively extend our implementation of it just a bit. Consider this: shouldn’t our elected officials be subjected to such mandatory testing? After all, Congress makes our laws; state legislators draw and re-draw voting districts, so a basic knowledge of the workings of our government and it’s pertinent historical development seems reasonable.
Classroom civics classes likely require some sort of Federal funding for textbooks, computer technology, field trips to the statehouse, etc. to teach the subject properly. So make it mandatory for state legislators to achieve a minimum average score for their home state to receive the specific education funding. And publish the test results in the local media. Everyone, big and small, needs to put head and heart to the lofty task of living the life of a productive, responsible, freedom-loving American. Because wherever you may find yourself in this world, good citizenship starts at home.
Philadelphia Union MLS Team Logo Incorporates The “Don’t Tread On Me” Snake Design of Colonial-era America
Nos Sunt Unum!
We are one!