I Am Civically Literate Enough to Write This Blog



I am nearly 100% qualified to opine on political and governmental issues. Ha!

And no, I didn’t cheat and Google the answers. If I had, I wouldn’t have missed bloody Question #7. Go see if you do better.

This is an interesting little project the ISI’s got. Their official survey – the one people can’t cheat on – shows that 71% of Americans fail the test. The average score for regular citizens is 49%. For people who held public office, it’s 44%. That’s just pathetic.

Here’s a finding that shows a dramatic confusion about religion in this country:


Seventy-nine percent of those who have been elected to government office do not know the Bill of Rights expressly prohibits establishing an official religion for the U.S.

Only 24% of college graduates know the First Amendment prohibits establishing an official religion for the United States.

I think we need to get to edumicating people.

At least we know without taking the test that we’re likely smarter than average:

The civic knowledge gained from engaging in frequent conversations about public affairs, reading about current events and history, and participating in more involved civic activities is greater than the gain from a bachelor’s degree alone.

And people wonder why I didn’t opt for crushing student loan debt…

Comments

  1. says

    I only gotted 30/33, but I guess that's not too terrible. Better than the November average, and way better than "college educators".(I never took US History in high school. Technically, I never graduated…)Blogging — Your Key to a Better Education.™Missed #4 (who?), #8 (oh, that happened? news to me…), and #10 (I take slight issue with the phrasing of the correct answer… "religion" could be taken to mean that it guarantees the existence of religion, i.e. all citizens will be provided with hot-and-cold running religion in every garage… in retrospect, it’s obvious they meant “freedom of”.)

  2. says

    It told me “You answered 32 out of 33 correctly — 96.97 %”I missed number 8 — I couldn’t recall whether or not the Costitution defined the number of supreme court justices, and guessed incorrectly.

  3. says

    I dunno how much weight I’d give to a quiz developed by a conservative religious anarchocapitalist group which publishes books by Rick Santorum. ISI is an activist ideological group, not an objective thinktank.

  4. says

    I did the quiz late last week and got 80-something percent, I think – (not bad for another foreigner, though a couple of them I was kicking myself for jumping the wrong way on a choice between two plausible-looking options).

  5. says

    More about the ISI: Wikipedia, Sourcewatch. Dkos and Conservapedia have nothing that I can find.While they do seem to be of a conservative bent, they are at least advocating education based on some actual objective facts about US government — in sharp contrast to the garbage being promoted by some varieties of conservatism. (Can anyone point to anything bad or good the ISI has done? I’ll document it…)Maybe this explains the wording of the correct answer to #10, i.e. they do think the Constitution guarantees that religion will be provided to all, whether we want it or not… but that’s the only test item I can pick even a tiny bone with.

  6. chris says

    I scored 88.something% which probably means I know more about these questions than the average american and I’m from germany with no special background in american history and government.How can that be possible?

  7. Last Hussar says

    I got 25 out of 33 correctly — 75.76 %, although I am in the UK. 5 of the 8 wrong were US specific (4 were legal ones), and at least one of the others was due to semantic errors, possibly on my part- like Efrique said about picking the wrong one of two possibles. I feel a bit sheepish at being the lowest.