From the The Harford County Republican Women’s Club:
The Harford County Republican Women’s Club (HCRW) is seeking entries for its annual Constitution Day Contest; a contest designed to support the 2004 federal law requiring any institution receiving federal dollars to provide educational programming on the history of the Constitution on September 17 of each year. Since the contest’s inception, students from Fallston Middle, Edgewood High School and home-schooled students have won prizes for their efforts with each taking home $500.
The group’s Constitution Day committee recognizes Harford County has encouraged students to study the history of this country through its’ long-standing Patriot Program. The HCRW’s focus on students and Constitution Day is an effort to support that education and to help students cement their understanding of their role as a citizen.
Public, private, parochial and home-schooling students from throughout Harford County are all encouraged to participate. $1,500 in prizes will be shared among the winners chosen in the elementary, middle and high school categories.
The HCRW believes students of every age grasp that the Constitution is the set of rules that we live by.
Elementary aged students who wish to participate are asked to create a collage that reflects what freedom means to them. Middle school students have the choice of two essay topics on the Constitution and society. Students in high schools will be required to develop a lesson plan on the Constitution that can be shared with their peers.
Entry deadline is September 11, 2013. Contest requirements and details may be found at http://hcrw.org/ or e-mail email@example.com for information.
Harford’s Republican Women Constitution Day contest for students http://hcrw.org/Education%20Issues.htm
Elementary aged students who wish to participate are asked to create a collage that reflects what freedom means to them. Collages must be no greater than poster board size.
Middle school students have the choice of two essay topics on the Constitution and society.
1. Patrick Henry wrote, “The Constitution is not an instrument for the government to restrain the people, it is an instrument for the people to restrain the government – lest it come to dominate our lives and interests.”
2. Which do you think creates a more prosperous, unified, free, and moral society: free market capitalism or socialism? Defend your opinion, addressing all four characteristics.
Students in high schools will be required to develop a lesson plan on the Constitution that can be shared with their peers.
– Patrick Henry wrote, “The Constitution is not an instrument for the government to restrain the people, it is an instrument for the people to restrain the government – lest it come to dominate our lives and interests.”
– Compare and contrast how free market capitalism and how socialism affects a unified, free, and moral society.
– Alexis de Tocqueville, French politician and author of Democracy in America, equated socialism to slavery. “….one also finds in the human heart a depraved taste for equality, which impels the weak to want to bring the strong down to their level, and which reduces men to preferring equality in servitude to inequality in freedom”
– What does de Tocqueville mean by this?
– Compare and contrast what ‘equality’ meant to the Founding Fathers versus what it means to a socialist.
Deadline, September 11, 2013 http://hcrw.org/Education%20Issues.htm
I’m still trying to figure out how comparing socialism to capitalism amounts to providing, “provide educational programming on the history of the Constitution.” There’s history and then there is this BS. In no way was the Constitution established to ensure a free-market capitalist society, or protect against the “slavery” of socialism. It is unfortunate that the HCRWC does not have a better grasp of this document or its history considering they are required to educate others on the subject.
Mr. Moderate says
Americans should indeed be much more educated as to the nature and history of the Constitution. No doubt. But this contest, sadly, is an educational sham designed to promote a narrow-minded perspective advocated by ideologues of the right.
A couple of years ago Steve Denning, an authority on Leadership and Management writing on Forbes.Com, described his belief as what should be the outcome of the process of education: “In recent posts, I have been suggesting that being educated includes (to give a short answer): a demonstrated ability to listen carefully, to think critically, to evaluate facts rigorously, to reason analytically, to imagine creatively, to articulate interesting questions, to explore alternative viewpoints, to maintain intellectual curiosity and to speak and write persuasively.” Notice the words carefully, critically, rigorously, analytically, and creatively.
At first glance the contest appears to encourage the outcome Denning advocates. The problem, however, with this particular contest, is that only those older high school students who have been properly “educated” for a prolonged period of time have any real chance of recognizing within the assignments the inherent bias masked as reasonable authority. Rarely will other students (including high schoolers “trained” to think a particular way dare or even think of challenging the “credibility” of the statements.
Why not use quotations that encourage true thought ( e.g., John Marshall : ““The Constitution is colorblind, and neither knows nor tolerates classes among citizens.” Or Thomas Jefferson: “The dead should not rule the living.”) encourage students to look to their society and the purpose of government.
It seems to me these statements are more open, more applicable to the present day, and thus more appropriate for students at all levels than the clearly propagandist statements by two radical anti-monarchists and advocates of unrestrained liberty (not the same as freedom).
And, what does the Constitution have to do with the nature of the economy. Is capitalism “republican” and Socialism is “anti-republican”? Tell that to most of the countries of Western Europe and Scandinavia.
Socialism didn’t exist when the Constitution was written.
Section 1. Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.
Look up involuntary servitude.
Taxation is involuntary servitude.
How so? To equate taxation to slavery is simply ignorant!
Financial enslavement. How can you get ahead in life and be prosperous when the gov. takes at least 1/3 of your earnings every year?
Than move. You are free to do that. The people the ammendment refers to are not free to do that or anything else for that matter. It is insulting to suggest that paying taxes is slavery. No where in the debate of the 13th ammendment was taxation a consideration.
Keith Gabel says
It sounds like we are getting our issues confused. Taxation without representation is involuntary servitude. We have a representative government, so the US is good with that part of the equation. As for socialism, which has as its most striking characteristic a blend of capital markets and state-owned industry, much like Germany and the United Kingdom, it is neither encouraged or discouraged by the US Constitution. The document itself is silent on the issue.
As for the contest itself, it Tinfoil Tommy and Mr. Moderate appear to be correct. The prizes will go to the students who can best parrot a predetermined answer, not to the most thoughtful and accurate portrayals of the US Constitution and our constitutional history. That is the nice thing about having too much money. You can give it away to whomever you wish.
Are we a representative gov? We “elect” people that are controlled by private banks and corporations. Look at the earmarks in a bill one time and you will find laws and handouts that benefit corporations and banks and not the citizens. Meanwhile “representatives” steal our liberties and trample the bill of rights.
Keith Gabel says
@TPP – I can’t argue with any of your statements. I was merely attempting to clear up the confusion that exists between economic systems and political systems and the belief that the US Constitution favors one over the other. I’ve noticed that it spends far more time on a system of governance, protections of the individual against the state, and protections for the minority against the majority.
Taxation to run the government is not involuntary servitude, however when you take tax dollars and give them directly to another person under the guise of charity, i.e. obamacare/ welfare/ food stamps/ obama phones, it is absolutely involuntary servitude.
No one said anything about slavery.
Eminent Domain to a foriegn oil company ie Keystone? BTW it is the Reagan phone and you have a choice. You can move a slave was not free to do so. Again equating the tax code to Slavery is ignorant!
Keith Gabel says
Following this logic, all tax credits, Social Security payments, VA benefits, Medicare, Medicaid, farm subsidies, food stamps, earned income tax credits – all of which involve taking money directly from the treasury and giving it to someone else – condemns us all to involuntary servitude. While I find you view rather draconian and heartless, I do see you point. I just disagree with the notion that these are bad things for a society to have, at least on some level.
I didn’t day that all of those programs were bad in concept.
The claim was that the constitution doesn’t support capitalism any more then socialism. I am showing that the constitution does not support socialism.
CDEV, your reading comprehension stinks.
The context of that ammendment is all about Slavery. To equate the two is again ignorant! If you did not know that about the 13 th ammendment your understanding of the Constitution Stinks!
Try reading. The amendment bans both slavery and involuntary servitude. No one here compared taxation to slavery other then your liberal hysterics.
I am a moderate and yes when people called paying taxes involuntary servitude they most certainly did.
Auto correct that is a cdev reply.
You haven’t shown anything except your narrow world view that supports your selfish filter of what is out there. I’m beginning to think that the conservatives I have met and listened to and read in this county must suffer from some sort of severe personality disorder where they have an inflated sense of importance that precludes them giving a damn about the rights of others. When you do not take anyone else seriously and elevate your own needs and opinions over those of others, when you seek to deny other people their own pursuit of opportunity and stomp all over the concept of promote the general welfare, you are simply ill.
Mr Pilkington says
Tell me more about your interpretation of “promote the general welfare”?
This is the epitome of liberal “logic.”
If you believe in the Constitution, you have a narrow world view.
If you ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country, you are selfish.
If you believe in paying your own way, taking less then you pay in, and not borrowing from the future wealth of this nation, you have a inflated sense of self importance, and you don’t care about others.
Pursuit of opportunity now means that others have the “right” to the to the fruits of your labor.
Promote the general welfare has been twisted into Provide for the general welfare.
“The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not.”
The liberal/ socialist pied piper is not your friend. It is the enemy of freedom.
Keith Gabel says
The US Constitution is silent on which type of economic system the US shall use. Obviously, it allows for socialism on some level, otherwise we would not have Social Security. It also allows for free markets, otherwise Wall Street wouldn’t be the envy of the world.
What the US Constitution does do is to provide for the foundation of our republic and the parameters within which it functions.