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Mon Nov 10, 2014, 04:40 PM

How many of you took civics/government classes in high school?

Last edited Mon Nov 10, 2014, 08:16 PM - Edit history (1)

Civics is only a graduation requirement in 9 states. Maybe the reason millennials aren't voting is because they truly have no understanding of the political process. This isn't a single generation issue because I imagine lot's of boomers and gen Xs also don't have the faintest idea, but is there an argument to be made for Civics being a high school graduation requirement?

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Reply How many of you took civics/government classes in high school? (Original post)
Alittleliberal Nov 2014 OP
Louisiana1976 Nov 2014 #1
prairierose Nov 2014 #2
Go Vols Nov 2014 #6
LuvNewcastle Nov 2014 #79
littlewolf Nov 2014 #104
840high Nov 2014 #157
onehandle Nov 2014 #3
calimary Nov 2014 #16
IdiocracyTheNewNorm Nov 2014 #116
malaise Nov 2014 #153
MineralMan Nov 2014 #4
Alittleliberal Nov 2014 #7
MineralMan Nov 2014 #9
TexasProgresive Nov 2014 #13
Frustratedlady Nov 2014 #40
MineralMan Nov 2014 #45
calimary Nov 2014 #20
Alittleliberal Nov 2014 #23
LoisB Nov 2014 #64
Shrike47 Nov 2014 #72
MineralMan Nov 2014 #151
MoonchildCA Nov 2014 #173
MineralMan Nov 2014 #175
MoonchildCA Nov 2014 #187
Ineeda Nov 2014 #146
OregonBlue Nov 2014 #180
pinto Nov 2014 #5
Art_from_Ark Nov 2014 #130
pinto Nov 2014 #131
Boomerproud Nov 2014 #138
Art_from_Ark Nov 2014 #144
Skidmore Nov 2014 #8
muntrv Nov 2014 #10
tammywammy Nov 2014 #11
BlindTiresias Nov 2014 #12
Alittleliberal Nov 2014 #18
BlindTiresias Nov 2014 #19
Alittleliberal Nov 2014 #22
BlindTiresias Nov 2014 #30
Alittleliberal Nov 2014 #33
susanwy Nov 2014 #67
branford Nov 2014 #87
BlindTiresias Nov 2014 #96
branford Nov 2014 #108
Spazito Nov 2014 #142
BlindTiresias Nov 2014 #143
branford Nov 2014 #149
BlindTiresias Nov 2014 #156
branford Nov 2014 #158
BlindTiresias Nov 2014 #159
branford Nov 2014 #160
BlindTiresias Nov 2014 #162
BlindTiresias Nov 2014 #93
JonLP24 Nov 2014 #182
historylovr Nov 2014 #14
KatyMan Nov 2014 #15
dilby Nov 2014 #17
DemocraticWing Nov 2014 #21
Alittleliberal Nov 2014 #27
LeftInTX Nov 2014 #50
Spazito Nov 2014 #24
haele Nov 2014 #25
stranger81 Nov 2014 #26
etherealtruth Nov 2014 #28
The Velveteen Ocelot Nov 2014 #29
Agnosticsherbet Nov 2014 #31
bravenak Nov 2014 #32
Alittleliberal Nov 2014 #44
riqster Nov 2014 #34
Cleita Nov 2014 #35
jwirr Nov 2014 #36
ChisolmTrailDem Nov 2014 #37
MadrasT Nov 2014 #38
treestar Nov 2014 #39
The Blue Flower Nov 2014 #41
SamKnause Nov 2014 #42
Alittleliberal Nov 2014 #54
jeff47 Nov 2014 #43
branford Nov 2014 #92
Alittleliberal Nov 2014 #94
jeff47 Nov 2014 #101
branford Nov 2014 #113
treestar Nov 2014 #123
A Little Weird Nov 2014 #46
Thinkingabout Nov 2014 #47
LP2K12 Nov 2014 #48
RobinA Nov 2014 #49
proReality Nov 2014 #51
yeoman6987 Nov 2014 #52
WillyT Nov 2014 #53
catbyte Nov 2014 #122
get the red out Nov 2014 #55
swilton Nov 2014 #56
sinkingfeeling Nov 2014 #57
tclambert Nov 2014 #58
LeftInTX Nov 2014 #59
LWolf Nov 2014 #60
RKP5637 Nov 2014 #61
Stuart G Nov 2014 #62
Siwsan Nov 2014 #63
ChazII Nov 2014 #65
KansDem Nov 2014 #66
CrispyQ Nov 2014 #68
Luminous Animal Nov 2014 #69
Stonegonads Nov 2014 #70
Alittleliberal Nov 2014 #73
sammy750 Nov 2014 #71
hfojvt Nov 2014 #74
Alittleliberal Nov 2014 #77
Alittleliberal Nov 2014 #91
hfojvt Nov 2014 #95
longship Nov 2014 #75
Stonegonads Nov 2014 #80
RebelOne Nov 2014 #76
TBF Nov 2014 #78
GoCubsGo Nov 2014 #81
1StrongBlackMan Nov 2014 #82
lark Nov 2014 #83
LeftInTX Nov 2014 #100
lark Nov 2014 #179
appalachiablue Nov 2014 #128
lark Nov 2014 #177
appalachiablue Nov 2014 #186
Blue_In_AK Nov 2014 #84
riversedge Nov 2014 #85
elleng Nov 2014 #86
onecaliberal Nov 2014 #88
Thor_MN Nov 2014 #89
JustAnotherGen Nov 2014 #90
Spitfire of ATJ Nov 2014 #97
Stonegonads Nov 2014 #98
PADemD Nov 2014 #99
csziggy Nov 2014 #102
lexington filly Nov 2014 #103
IdiocracyTheNewNorm Nov 2014 #105
malokvale77 Nov 2014 #106
branford Nov 2014 #115
malokvale77 Nov 2014 #121
minivan2 Nov 2014 #107
catchnrelease Nov 2014 #109
alp227 Nov 2014 #110
whathehell Nov 2014 #111
TygrBright Nov 2014 #112
jtuck004 Nov 2014 #114
Alittleliberal Nov 2014 #119
jtuck004 Nov 2014 #165
B Calm Nov 2014 #117
catbyte Nov 2014 #118
LibDemAlways Nov 2014 #120
jillan Nov 2014 #124
ReRe Nov 2014 #125
rosesaylavee Nov 2014 #126
Pauldg47 Nov 2014 #127
Ned_Devine Nov 2014 #129
arcane1 Nov 2014 #135
Erich Bloodaxe BSN Nov 2014 #132
HockeyMom Nov 2014 #133
HockeyMom Nov 2014 #147
loyalsister Nov 2014 #134
TNNurse Nov 2014 #136
hunter Nov 2014 #137
tech3149 Nov 2014 #139
ColesCountyDem Nov 2014 #140
Codeine Nov 2014 #141
Alittleliberal Nov 2014 #148
pansypoo53219 Nov 2014 #145
bigwillq Nov 2014 #150
Historic NY Nov 2014 #152
mstinamotorcity2 Nov 2014 #154
justhanginon Nov 2014 #155
alittlelark Nov 2014 #161
0rganism Nov 2014 #163
annabanana Nov 2014 #164
Liberal_in_LA Nov 2014 #166
snot Nov 2014 #167
Lugnut Nov 2014 #168
kelliekat44 Nov 2014 #169
brewens Nov 2014 #170
Myrina Nov 2014 #171
raccoon Nov 2014 #172
shanti Nov 2014 #174
liberal N proud Nov 2014 #176
Douglas Carpenter Nov 2014 #178
JonLP24 Nov 2014 #181
ProfessorGAC Nov 2014 #183
Nay Nov 2014 #184
logosoco Nov 2014 #185
TransitJohn Nov 2014 #188
NutmegYankee Nov 2014 #189
X_Digger Nov 2014 #190

Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 04:43 PM

1. I took a Civics course in my sophomore year which was an elective. We were, however,

required to take an American Government course as seniors. That was back in the 70s.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 04:43 PM

2. When I was in school, we took....

civics in 8th grade and Government in high school, They were both required for graduation.

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Response to prairierose (Reply #2)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 04:46 PM

6. Same

Civics was required in Jr.High

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Response to prairierose (Reply #2)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:07 PM

79. Same here.

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Response to LuvNewcastle (Reply #79)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:31 PM

104. same here. learned that a felony would keep me from voting

or owning a gun. that kept me from doing alot of stupid stuff
because ya never know.

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Response to prairierose (Reply #2)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 09:01 PM

157. Same here.

 

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 04:44 PM

3. I did. Schooled well. Voted as soon as I turned 18.

Today kids just want to spend $1.99 to vote for their favorite reality show assclown.

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Response to onehandle (Reply #3)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:00 PM

16. Seconded. Couldn't wait til I could vote!!!

My first campaign efforts were the Student Coalition for Humphrey/Muskie.

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Response to onehandle (Reply #3)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:49 PM

116. Same here voted at 18 of course many of our friends & family were involuntarily being sent to

 

Vietnam so I guess we were more motivated to get off our asses and vote.

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Response to onehandle (Reply #3)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 08:33 PM

153. But civics is about society and government

and the market has replaced society and is no killing government so they don't want anyone to understand society or government.

It's no accident that civics is no longer required - knowledge is power and they want us powerless.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 04:45 PM

4. Oh, hell, yes.

Civics, social studies, government. We had classes in those all through school, starting in elementary school. California, high school class of 1963.

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Response to MineralMan (Reply #4)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 04:49 PM

7. I went to a fairly progressive private school in the northeast. Class of 2012

I took Political Advocacy and Civics. Both were electives and there were no required government class's. In both those class's there were less then 5 students. We did brief sections on government in a history class every couple of years but never spend more then 2 or 3 days on it.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Reply #7)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 04:52 PM

9. There was more focus on that stuff back in the 1960s.

By the time we'd graduated from High School, we'd studied every branch of government, from local to federal, understood the electoral college and studied both the US and state Constitution pretty thoroughly. We also got our draft board sign-up form in our senior year of high school, just to make things real.

We learned about our system of government and how it worked and didn't work in pretty good depth, really.

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Response to MineralMan (Reply #9)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 04:59 PM

13. AMEN! Preach it MineralMan!

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Response to MineralMan (Reply #9)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:21 PM

40. Same in the 1950s. There was heavy emphasis on government, social studies and Am. history.

I think that is why I'm so tied into politics. It isn't a mystery, although today's politics doesn't come close to what we had in the 50s. I really got into it after JFK was killed. I was angry and read everything I could get my hands on.

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Response to Frustratedlady (Reply #40)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:24 PM

45. When I was a freshman in college,

I had to interrupt a large biology survey class to announce that President Kennedy had been shot. I had seen a news report on the television in the dorm's community room on my way to that class. It was devastating. I had campaigned for JFK when I was a sophomore in high school.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Reply #7)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:03 PM

20. Welcome to DU, Alittleliberal!

Glad you're here! Therein lies the problem, I fear. So little motivation to get involved. Things are probably gonna get very much worse before they ever start getting better. We'd need more people to wake up, first.

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Response to calimary (Reply #20)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:06 PM

23. Thanks! My mom was a long time lurker. I've been lurking since I was 13!

But only recently started putting my thoughts out there.

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Response to MineralMan (Reply #4)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:51 PM

64. So did we. Pennsylvania (through 11th grade) and California high school class of

1964. In PA we also had high school class called Contemporary American Problems. None of these were electives.

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Response to MineralMan (Reply #4)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:00 PM

72. What part of California? Anyway, we studied all that stuff every year. Required. Class of '65.

We also put on a mock trial to get a handle on how those work.

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Response to Shrike47 (Reply #72)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 08:26 PM

151. Ventura County small town.

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Response to MineralMan (Reply #151)

Tue Nov 11, 2014, 02:19 PM

173. Hey. That's where I am.

Do you still live in the area?

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Response to MoonchildCA (Reply #173)

Tue Nov 11, 2014, 02:29 PM

175. Nope. Moved out of Fillmore in 1963, and only come back for visits

now. I'm in Minnesota, these days.

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Response to MineralMan (Reply #175)

Tue Nov 11, 2014, 11:33 PM

187. Ah! Brrrr... Minnesota.

I have family there. That's where my dad was from.

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Response to MineralMan (Reply #4)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 07:52 PM

146. Massachusetts, 1964

Same requirements as you, MM, for graduation. Social Studies incorporated geography and history. We also had to pass phys ed, English, at least one science like biology, physiology or chemistry, a language such as French, Latin or Spanish, basic math, and an advanced math such as business math (writing checks, balancing a checkbook, knowing the difference between debits and credits, assets and liabilities, etc.) or algebra/geometry/calculus. A practical art was required, too. Cooking/sewing for girls and 'shop' for boys. (Remember this was the mid-sixties!!) I often say that back in the day, high school graduation was the equivalent of a BA degree.

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Response to MineralMan (Reply #4)

Tue Nov 11, 2014, 03:16 PM

180. Same here. Oregon and Montana schools class if '67

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 04:46 PM

5. I took Civics, Social Studies and American History in high school. Required classes.

Late 1960's. The instructors were adamant about having that background as part of our education. They were engaging and open to questions, debate, et al. I loved the classes.

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Response to pinto (Reply #5)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 07:23 PM

130. I had an American government class that coincided with the Watergate hearings

We watched some of the hearings on TV. The teacher said, "This is what happens when you elect a crook as President".

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Response to Art_from_Ark (Reply #130)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 07:27 PM

131. That era was a real education. (nt)

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Response to Art_from_Ark (Reply #130)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 07:43 PM

138. We must be close in age-Class of '74 here.

I had 3 years of History class and then, just in time for Watergate, I had P.O.D. (Problems of Democracy). All my teacher had to do was bring the TV into class every day and turn it on. He smirked through the whole thing. I remember the day John and Yoko were in the audience-we had a room full of impressed seniors.

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Response to Boomerproud (Reply #138)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 07:49 PM

144. We never got John and Yoko to visit our school

but our teacher definitely had a big grin on his face during the hearings. He was a dyed-in-the-wool yellow dog Democrat, as were all of my civics/history/government teachers.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 04:49 PM

8. Back in the day...

we had civics in eighth grade and could not matriculate into high school without passing an exam. Then we were required to take American history in high school and that inclded a subsection on the government and how it operates. Now this was about 50ish years ago in Illinois. American history was also a required course during my freshman year in college--also back in the day. My grandson has nothing close to that level of teaching now.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 04:57 PM

10. I had civics in 9th grade.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 04:57 PM

11. Graduated in 1999, it was required.

Plus econ in high school. Then more government and economics plus finance while working on my bachelors and more econ and finance in graduate school.

There are clearly posters that have never had any govt or econ education, you can tell.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 04:58 PM

12. Millenial here

I had civics, most of us had some analogue to that. This is not a good explanation for low turnout, sorry.

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Response to BlindTiresias (Reply #12)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:01 PM

18. Clearly many of us did take Government class's

My point is that it is only a graduation requirement in 9 states. It should be a requirement in every school.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Reply #18)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:02 PM

19. Yeah, maybe

But as a causal explanation for low turnout it is pretty weak.

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Response to BlindTiresias (Reply #19)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:04 PM

22. And obviously it is not the sole reason

However I think denying the link between turnout and a lack of knowledge of how the system works is pretty weak too.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Reply #22)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:13 PM

30. Honestly?

I think if we are going to go the whole civics angle it is because there is very little political imagination here or any instilling of values that can give people a political imagination for the future, and our form of government only further frustrates this as there is a long and drawn out process in which inputs and outputs are only weakly linked and most of the time people don't benefit from them anyway.

In essence you are asking people to get excited about a years long process with very slow movement where the odds of a desirable output are not great. Just a basic understanding of human psychology should tell you this alone is not sufficient to interest people. This is even further compounded by the fact that being politically active takes a lot of time and for gains which, frankly, are unlikely and easily reversed.

The fact that any criticism along the lines I am giving is met by sanctimonious statements bordering on religious dogmatism about the importance of the constitution and a centuries old republican form of government doesn't help matters either. Is it any surprise many (most?) people just give up?

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Response to BlindTiresias (Reply #30)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:15 PM

33. No surprise at all!

+1 for a great analysis.

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Response to BlindTiresias (Reply #30)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:58 PM

67. Ignore realities

"In essence you are asking people to get excited about a years long process with very slow movement where the odds of a desirable output are not great. ... This is even further compounded by the fact that being politically active takes a lot of time and for gains which, frankly, are unlikely and easily reversed. "

That is true, but this is how our government works, based on the constitution. It isn't dogma, it is reality. If you have no patience for it, then start a revolution. But to imply, if you are, that this is enough of a reason for the youth not to vote ("no excitement because stuff takes a long time", then that is very, very sad. Not everything in life is instant gratification and you say so yourself that the consequences of government decisions are not easily reversed. But guess what, you have to live with them for years!



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Response to susanwy (Reply #67)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:13 PM

87. The difficultly and slow speed of change was an intentional feature of our Constitution.

 

It's a feature, not a bug.

Those who paid attention in grade school social studies would understand. It also did not dampen the enthusiasm to engage in politics from any of my classmates from across the political spectrum. Heck, I volunteered for my first presidential campaign in high school for Michael Dukakis.

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Response to branford (Reply #87)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:22 PM

96. I'm aware

I mostly see frustration from people who don't already have an interest in politics, so if the feature was made to discourage public interest it is working nicely (it most certainly was).

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Response to BlindTiresias (Reply #96)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:39 PM

108. It was designed to prevent huge cultural and legal changes based on erratic political winds.

 

It was also one of the mechanisms to prevent the tyranny of the majority.

Only ideas that were well established and widely approved would (or should) be instituted.

If people want to become involves in politics and governance, nationally, at the state level, or locally, they must take the initiative. Permitting rapid change (requiring Constitutional amendments) in order to encourage interest in government seems foolish and dangerous. As the dramatic Republican gains this election suggest, those that may become interested will not necessary agree with your politics.

Our government, the oldest modern democracy, is not like the parliamentary systems of most other western democracies. It's inordinately difficult for one party or group to dominate all aspects of government, and when they try, they are usually punished soon afterward at the ballot box (e.g., see 2010 elections). Our bicameral legislature and federalist structure that gives demonstrable power to the states similarly acts as a bulwark against rapid change.

Our Constitution is a remarkable governing document with a rich history of careful political compromise and forward thinking. I wonder how many people actually remember that it was our second attempt at establishing our government, after the unsuccessful Articles of Confederation.

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Response to branford (Reply #108)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 07:48 PM

142. Excellent post...

Very informative.

Thank you.

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Response to branford (Reply #108)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 07:48 PM

143. Yeah

It just so happens that the way it is structured always benefits the elite, because it was designed to protect them and insulate them popular attitudes. You find this desirable, I understand.

I'd rather not live in a country where it takes colossal efforts for people to get legislature that benefits them to have it reversed a generation later by an elite doing it casually. You like this, I don't, and you will argue I am in the minority, fine.

I am aware actual change is hopeless, in other words, it doesn't mean it is right or I have to agree with it.

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Response to BlindTiresias (Reply #143)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 08:24 PM

149. "Popular attitudes" are quit often very dangerous.

 

Even the most cursory review of the modern histories of established democracies are littered with the deprivations and tyranny of "popular attitudes" (e.g., WWI, WWII, etc.). I lost most of my family in concentration camps due to the "popular attitudes" that saw the democratic rise of Hitler. Moreover, the winds of "popular attitudes" can change rapidly and dangerously, and can turn on you without mercy. Be careful about the kind and method of change you advocate, "La révolution dévore ses enfants" (the Revolution devours its children).

Americans fought a revolution for our independence, and the Founders did not want to do so again any time soon. Individual liberty was paramount and government distrusted, particularly a centralized federal government. After the failure of the Articles of Confederation, many realized a strong federal government might be necessary, but numerous safeguards and checks and balances were instituted, everything from a bicameral legislature and a separately elected executive to the Bill of Rights. The Founders wisely believed that in a democratic republic, particularly to prevent a tyranny of the majority, change should be evolutionary, not revolutionary.

You ironically lament both that certain liberal gains have been reversed and that change is too difficult. In a democracy, all change will not be on a single trajectory. We are not guaranteed to always have liberal change, as the election of last week attests. That is why the protections against rapid and radical change in our Constitution protect people from across the political spectrum. However, change does occur, if slowly, and elections do have consequences.

Change is most certainly not hopeless, we even managed to amend our Constitution 27 times. However, institutional, social and cultural change is not easy, nor should it be, and you must persevere and consistently convince great majorities of you fellow citizens of the wisdom of your desired changes before it will be incorporated.

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Response to branford (Reply #149)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 08:41 PM

156. I think you misunderstand

My lament is not that leftist or progressive gains for the population are simply reversed, but that such change takes monumental effort and are relatively easy to reverse while the wishes of the elite pass along with often trivial effort. You treat this as if it is some even struggle against competing forces where each get their turns but isn't, and I think the work of Marten Gilens and in particular "Testing Theories of American Politics: Elites, Interest Groups, and Average Citizens" would demonstrate that there is indeed a matter of unequal effort for unequal rewards occurring in the republic.

So yes, it is indeed hopeless as what you say about the republic is true and yet so is the matter of the vastly disproportionate influence of the wealthy. The status quo is favored and structurally embedded, but the status quo is also a plutocracy, and so there it is.

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Response to BlindTiresias (Reply #156)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 09:29 PM

158. What changes would you therefore suggest?

 

Given your chosen terms, such as "elites" and "plutocracy," and your focus on the influence of wealth (which pervades even democratic parliamentary systems where change is much easier and faster), it sounds as if you want a hardcore socialist rethink of our entire governing structure, or something of similar nature.

If so, except for a very small (and vocal DU) fringe, I see no evidence that such a fundamental reworking of our Constitution is desired by anywhere near a majority of the citizens, regardless of political party. Even in democratic systems where change comes more readily, you still need the support of the majority.

Additionally, what democratic protections would you institute to discourage a new status quo that favored more conservative interests if they become the new majority.

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Response to branford (Reply #158)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 09:33 PM

159. I already acknowledged you are correct

Regarding the formulation of the government, so anything I suggest would be easily counter-acted by your correct arguments regarding its construction. As I said and agree with you, any kind of leftist change is hopeless. That I don't like it and disagree as much as a human can disagree is immaterial to the fact that progressive/leftist change is not in the cards and the federal republic of the United States is going to be right wing for as long as it exists.

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Response to BlindTiresias (Reply #159)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 09:52 PM

160. I didn't mean for my post to be adversarial,

 

I just don't understand the type of charges you really want, and yet would still maintain our democratic character.

Assuming you could amass a sufficient majority that agrees with your views, how would you change the fundamental nature of our governing institutions to permit rapid and easy change, ensure the system was still egalitarian, and prevent stark reversals in the event less progressive interests become the majority? How would you ensure that any government would remain both leftist and democratic?

Many other established western democracies have different systems than ours, usually parliamentary, where change is much easier. Nevertheless, most of these systems do not produce any better results (e.g., Canada and Australia, once as liberal as much of Europe, are now solidly governed by parties well-liked by Republicans). In fact, even with our purportedly more difficult governing structure, we're still the oldest modern democracy, and a political, economic, cultural and military superpower.

America is also more conservative overall than Europe and elsewhere due to historic and regional cultural and political attitudes, not because of federalism or a separately elected executive. Moreover, even though we are more conservative overall, unlike Europe, both on the state level and in the EU Parliament, truly far-right and violent political, often neo-Nazi, parties hold no notable elected offices.

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Response to branford (Reply #160)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 10:06 PM

162. What I think doesn't matter

You are correct, the United States is and will remain a right wing country. Leftists should probably leave.

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Response to susanwy (Reply #67)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:19 PM

93. Uh, OK?

The reality isn't dogma, defenses of it based on the fact it exists and is "reality" and therefore good and to be defended are what is dogma. Very clear distinction there, I think.

Also the process takes a long time but reversing it does not. The gains of the New Deal took, oh, about half a century to get and were minor gains compared to what has been fought for by the left. It was already chipped away at before FDR's corpse had even cooled, and it set to be completely undone in its entirety. So there go, people work tremendously for decades to get half measures, and the aristocracy work in leisure to undo it entirely. Weird, isn't it?

It is a matter of uneven effort and output, which is the source of the frustration. The people have to work tirelessly and put in tremendous effort at often personal and professional peril to get half-measures that are totally undone, while the elite sit in luxury and undo it entirely at their leisure and more often than not get other legislature passed that does exactly what they want it to do. SO we have one portion of the people who have to put tremendous effort in to get minor outputs, and another who don't have to do much at all and their output is mostly what they want. That is "how it works" and is "reality" yeah, I know, that is why I am saying it exists but you can't expect people to be enthusiastic about it or not to drop out.

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Response to susanwy (Reply #67)

Tue Nov 11, 2014, 04:25 PM

182. There are other realities that plays into how government works

Big money influence and widespread acceptance of global warming denial, lobbyist influence over politicians. Media also plays a role--not sure who won the debate? The media will gladly tell you. Politicians, particularly mainstream national candidates are famous for sometimes not expressing a clear opinion on some issues. Compramises in the interest of personal careers slows the rate of meaningful change.

They won't admit it but these sort of conversations take place


One thing I don't see mentioned while the youth vote constantly is the turnout, especially midterm turnout varies on personal income. The smaller the income, the wider the gap.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 04:59 PM

14. I took Civics in 9th grade and Government in the 11th.

Both were required, along with American and world history. That was in the 80s.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:00 PM

15. Yes. Graduated 1984

And senior year had to take a Civics/Economics class as a req. Honors in my case :smug:

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:00 PM

17. I did and had an amazing teacher.

She was an old Hippie and spent a lot of time telling us about our rights and what Police can and can't do.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:04 PM

21. Millennials turned out at about the same rate as young people in past generations.

There's no mythical lack of civics education causing my generation to be less interested, because we're about as uninterested in the whole system as all the past generations. Those of us who care will continue caring as we get older, and many of our less interested counterparts will start to care as they get older and realize their roles in the world. This is the same way it's been for decades, and will continue to be so for many years.

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Response to DemocraticWing (Reply #21)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:10 PM

27. Maybe it's not as large of a factor as I think it is

But there's no denying the Civics education has become a lower priority in the last decade then ever before.

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Response to DemocraticWing (Reply #21)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:32 PM

50. This Baby Boomer agrees with you



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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:07 PM

24. The relegation of civics in education to the bottom of curriculum at best...

and complete abolishment in some cases is, I believe, a key reason why understanding and interest in participating in the electoral process is dropping precipitously.

Civics were essential courses when I was in high school. We were taught not only about our own system of governance both that of others as well. We learned the history of the different systems as well.

I firmly believe Civics must be a high school graduation requirement. It is just as important as the other subjects which are now a requirement, imo.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:07 PM

25. Civics requirement in 10th grade. 1974.

First semester US History, second semester Civics, or vice versa.

Reqiured day trips to the City and County administration buildings to see how they ran, a report on a City Council meeting (pick the day) or on the value of a city/county service that was run on tax dollars (I did a report on the City Library system), and a voluntary city-wide trip to the State Capital in the spring.

Again, 1974 - in the progressive Pacific Northwest. The Board of Education took their charter seriously, and wanted to ensure students were educated and would become informed and active citizens that could make a better world for the future.

Citizens, not caste members. What a concept.

Haele

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:08 PM

26. I took Government my senior year -- it was mandatory, and unfortunately

it was taught by the Assistant Football Coach, who had no interest in civics or government, but had to teach a class to continue coaching. The year I was in his class, the guy spent a whole day explaining his theory of why women should have never gotten the vote.

Ah, memories.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:12 PM

28. Yes, it was a requirement (back in the day)

As a point of reference, I graduated from high school in 1980

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:13 PM

29. Had to, it was required.

It was called something else, Social Studies, I think, but it was mainly about government - how a bill becomes a law, etc., with some other stuff about geography. I thought it was boring, but at least I had to learn enough to pass. That was in 1965, though.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:13 PM

31. In my Sophomore year, 1968. The first Semester was Civics, and the Second Semester was Oklahoma

History and Government.

From what I can find, they do not teach such classes where I live in San Diego. They do teach California History, and that History section covers how State Government works.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:14 PM

32. It was US Government.

 

It was a graduation requirement, but the requirements changed the year after I graduated. It was not in depth and it was almost as good as nothing.
But we did do mock campaigns and learned a bit about congress. It is not enough, though.
We should have free Jr. college with a civics class requirement.

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Response to bravenak (Reply #32)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:22 PM

44. No Child Left Behind

Seemed to sign the deathwish for Civics and government education around the country. They became such low priorities that everyone forgot they were a much larger part of education in the past.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:16 PM

34. I did, but that was in the 70's.

My kids didn't have the class.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:16 PM

35. Eighth grade, I had a class actually labeled "Civics".

Nothing in high school although our American History teacher tried to interweave some civics into our classes. I actually learned the most from my mother's citizenship preparation materials. I had to help her learn it because she sometimes had a problem understanding some of the English. Back then the exam was conducted in English only.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:16 PM

36. A little ashamed to admit it but I did not take civics in high school because I quit school in my

sophomore year to get married. Got a GED in 1965 and went to college. There I took a political science course from a R and many history classes at the same time I was running McGovern headquarters for the county Democrats. Even with all this education I credit my father the FDR Democrat for teaching me the most about civics.

One of his wisest sayings would come every April: "Look out the window. What do you see out there? Roads, a school bus, the school, the snow plow, the fire department. That is what your tax money pays for."

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:16 PM

37. Had it in my freshman year of high school (9th grade) That was 1978. nt

 

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:18 PM

38. Was not required in my school if you were in "honors" track.

It may have been required if you were not an "honors" student, I have no idea.

I graduated in 1983.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:20 PM

39. I don't

think we had to take it, though you could. It really should be a requirement. How it got so it wasn't is pretty strange.

Yeah people who are "disappointed" by Obama and stayed home in 2010 clearly don't understand. If they liked him so much, why not give him more time? But to go off like he had to do everything right away showed they didn't realize that he could have done more had they voted D in 2010 to keep Congress the way it was.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:22 PM

41. Ninth grade 1964

When we began talking about what was happening in Vietnam.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:22 PM

42. I did.

I took all government, civics, and history classes that were available.

We were not taught the truth about this countries history.

Howard Zinn did an outstanding job with his books, documentaries, and lectures.

It is intentional that the curriculum has deteriorated so drastically in this country !!!!!!!!!!!

It is easier to control an uniformed population.

The Republicans are the greatest threat this country faces !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Our history is being rewritten.

The majority of states get their textbooks from Texas.

The keep pushing the line further and further on 'Separation of Church and State' with great assistance from the Supreme Court.

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Response to SamKnause (Reply #42)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:39 PM

54. A Peoples History of the United States

Should be required reading for all citizens. Even in a liberal northeast Friends school, the history I learned was revisionist claptrap at times.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:22 PM

43. They rolled it into the US History classes.

Hence, not part of the graduation requirements - US History is.

I'm not really sure why it would take an entire class to understand how the US government works....it's not that complicated. And making it part of US History gives out plenty of concrete examples of how it works.

Heck, linking it to history might make people consider dissatisfaction at our party didn't start in 2014. Or 2008.

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Response to jeff47 (Reply #43)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:19 PM

92. Many graduate from college, and still don't understand the basics of our government.

 

Heck, most of the country cannot even name the vice-president, no less their senators, representative or governor.

When adults know more about reality televisions stars than their elected representatives, I'm thinking that we need to add more civics and social studies classes to the curriculum.

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Response to branford (Reply #92)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:21 PM

94. +1 n/t

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Response to branford (Reply #92)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:26 PM

101. Trivia is a poor measurement of understanding.

Naming the vice president doesn't tell you anything about what the vice president does. Does me being able to answer "Dan Quayle" mean I understand what the vice president does? (He was VP when I was in High School. So he'd be the one you'd be drilling into my head via classes to so I could answer your trivia question.)

Instead, I learned about things previous vice presidents actually did, and what his position as leader of the Senate actually meant. And that was covered via 200 years of examples, including how the role of that office has drastically shifted during that time.

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Response to jeff47 (Reply #101)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:48 PM

113. I was being facetious.

 

Nevertheless, civic understanding, no less civic duty, has been a rapidly diminishing aspect our our educational system, from grade school through college, for some time.

My personal theory is that it is often the result of parents and teachers of all political persuasions not being able to distinguish between teaching about government and related social issues and actual political advocacy and indoctrination. As the populace becomes more polarized, history and politics start to become legal and social minefields that many believe are best avoided. The fact that our students' understanding of math and the hard sciences is also diminishing, I also can understand why some schools might also wish to alter their curriculum priorities.

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Response to jeff47 (Reply #43)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:56 PM

123. People forget it after a class, like they did the rest of the history

The real issue would be keeping up with it.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:25 PM

46. I did not have civics or government classes

Those topics got rolled into social studies in elementary and middle school but I don't remember it being taught at my high school even as an elective. Class of '94.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:25 PM

47. I also had civics in high school but better than civics I had civics at home.

My father was quiet involved in the political process, studied the candidates and expected us in a voting booth every election. He was a regular watching the Sunday shows, before cable and twenty four hour news shows. Both parents worked in voting precincts and I have had the privilege of doing so myself. Thanks for your post, a very valid question.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:27 PM

48. I did.

Civics in middle school. American Govt, Economics and World History all required for graduation at my high school. Class of 2004.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:27 PM

49. This Boomer

took Civics in I think 9th grade. American History in 8th. Both requirements for graduation in the '70's.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:36 PM

51. We had an introduction to Civics

from the 3rd - 9th grades, then full-blown Civics classes in high school (NY). But that was in the 50s and 60s, when we were actually given a liberal education and taught how to think critically.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:37 PM

52. I took an American Government class in Senior year

 

That is it. The other two social studies classes I had were American Studies and World Studies.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:39 PM

53. I Did... Graduated 1973...

 


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Response to WillyT (Reply #53)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:55 PM

122. Me too! I went to my 40th reunion last year. Weird, but fun.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:40 PM

55. It was required

But I graduated from HS in 1982.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:42 PM

56. There is an argument to be made for taking any classes in the humanities

 

There is too much hard-sciences/mathematics worship. We need to think about solving problems that don't have finite/quantitative solutions.

Having said that I believe that many p/s or history texts have been politicized......

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:42 PM

57. I took Civics in my senior year of high school. 1966

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:43 PM

58. You mean Democrat indoctrination class?

That's how Republicans see civics class. Science class, too. And American history, unless you rewrite it according to Texas standards and leave out certain things . . . like slavery.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:43 PM

59. It was rolled into 9th and 11th grade Social Studies and US History

No real emphasis on civics though. It was always considered boring and not dwelled on in-depth. There was a delicate balance between trying to overwhelm the students with politics versus letting them understand the concepts and dynamics of history/govt. This was in the early 1970s

A simple alternative would be to give sample US citizenship tests to students in high school US History/Govt classes. The test isn't that hard, yet studying for it would assure that students had mastered the fundamentals.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:43 PM

60. I did. It was a requirement. nt

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:45 PM

61. I did! They covered the functioning of the government and how it all worked

endlessly and it was extremely well done! ... that, was a long time ago. And the tests were damn hard! In the high school I attended the teachers had to have a minimum of a masters degree, and they were sharp.



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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:49 PM

62. I took civics/gov in high school in 60s, Taught civics/gov in high school..68-97

Yes, I took it in a Chicago Public HS, and taught it in Chicago Public HS. There are so many stories to tell, some other time. Quite an experience..

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:49 PM

63. Civics/Government in 11th and 12th grade

If we volunteered for a campaign, we got extra credit so I did and I got hooked.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:52 PM

65. 1976 both

gov't and econ were required classes.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:54 PM

66. I did: my senior year

I remember Mr. Dunphy taught the class and we were devoting a unit on the three branches of government. He said think what you will about the executive and legislative branches--they are political bodies--but always respect the judicial branch. He described Supreme Court justices and "wise and experienced" and who would interpret the Constitution using that wisdom. He further told us we should never criticize the Supreme Court because they were above politics.

That was a long time ago...

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:59 PM

68. Social Studies in 5th grade, Government in 9th and American Problems in 12th.

Rocky Mt. region, 64-75

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:59 PM

69. 7th grade. Each student also had a NY Times on her/his desk in the morning.

The class was called "Civics and Current Events". Part of the curricula was learning how to read a newspaper critically. It was an excellent class.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 05:59 PM

70. Civics in school

 

I remember taking civics in my junior year. I enjoyed civics and I also wanted to do my civics teacher. However that was back in 1969 and teachers weren't doing their students back then. Every person with intelligence should watch "Idiocracy", it started as a movie and has now become more like a documentary.

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Response to Stonegonads (Reply #70)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:02 PM

73. Welcome to DU!

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:00 PM

71. The Republican state law makers have taken it out of the school system.

It is against the law in several Republican controlled state to discuss civic, voting, and information the normal person should have. But the GOP is destroying the states and nation, by making it criminal now to teach. BTW, the most uninformed people live in the USA. We are rated 1. With all the social media we should be the most informed, but the real issue is the information provided are LIES and not the real truth. The Republicans don't want the people to know the truth.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:02 PM

74. that statistic appears to be bogus

the same Huffpo article which lead with the "9 states" nonsense also noted that a civics COURSE was required in 39 states.

The headline is just boo-hooing because students were not required to take yet another standardized test before they could graduate.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/10/12/circle-study-finds-most-s_n_1959522.html

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Response to hfojvt (Reply #74)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:05 PM

77. Nice catch

Thanks for the correction!

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Response to hfojvt (Reply #74)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:17 PM

91. But in today's education system

If they aren't taking a test on a subject, they aren't really learning about it at all. When teachers have to teach to a test they don't have time to cover material that won't be on the test.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Reply #91)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:21 PM

95. hard for me to tell

since I neither teach, nor goto school, nor have kids.

But back in my day, in order to pass a course, you generally had to pass a whole bunch of tests, something like two or three per semester, plus a final exam.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:03 PM

75. Mandatory in Detroit Public Schools in the early 60's.

At Thomas M. Cooley High School

in Detroit, civics was mandatory. I had Mr. Clubok. (I won't say what we called him behind his back.)

But Cooley was a great school, and Detroit was a great city. Here's the Cooley auditorium, a great venue for music and drama.


Sadly, it is all gone.


Cooley in 1928, when it was brand new:


When I graduated, in 1966, it was a vibrant, multicultural neighborhood. Our principal was a great one, Ben Chinitz (sp?).

Sadly, those days in Detroit are gone. Hopefully they will rise again.

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Response to longship (Reply #75)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:07 PM

80. Detroit, high schools.

 

I went to Chadsey, Chadsey is now gone and I stay close to the empty shell that Cooley now happens to have become.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:03 PM

76. I took it in 9th grade

and it bored me to tears. I passed, but I don't how.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:05 PM

78. You'd have to be pretty shut

off from the world to not see the pleas to vote on social media.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:08 PM

81. It was part of my history class.

It's been a loooooooong time since I was in high school, but I recall that we had to pass a civics test to pass the class.

But, yes, there are a lot of Boomers, Gen Xers, and even pre-Boomers who have no fucking clue as to how their government is supposed to work. It boggles my mind how many of them there are. I'll just mention that the President can't spend money, because that's the job of Congress, and I'm usually met with this blank stare. Sometimes, I'll even get an argument out of them, to which I'll reply, "What a shame that someone of your age doesn't even know how your government works. That's the kind of thing I expect out of a third grader, not a 60-year-old (or whatever.)" To me, there's no excuse for that kind of thing.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:09 PM

82. We took it in 8th Grade ...

 

And then again in the 10th grade. The 10th grade course included having to spend one day a week (for the semester) volunteering for a councilman or elected official.

That was back in the mid '70s.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:10 PM

83. We had to take Civics in 11th grade

We also had to take Americanism vs. Communism in 12th grade or we couldn't graduate. Civics was good, AvC was total propaganda.
Capitalism and capitalist are so wonderful, best system ever, yada yada yada. I missed every day possible in that class, only went the exact # of days required for attendance and a passing grade. It was totally vile.

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Response to lark (Reply #83)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:25 PM

100. Wow: What state and what year was this?

I went to a fairly liberal high school in WI the early 1970s. We studied the ongoing US anti-communism propaganda. It made my conservative dad pissed.

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Response to LeftInTX (Reply #100)

Tue Nov 11, 2014, 03:02 PM

179. This was 1969/1970 in Florida

My conservative parents loved the Americanism vs Communism ciriculum. I didn't tell them about my 2 liberal social studies teachers that opened my mind to what was really happening, they'd have taken me out of those classes.

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Response to lark (Reply #83)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 07:18 PM

128. Interesting. Wonder when & where that was. Just the decade would be appreciated.

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Response to appalachiablue (Reply #128)

Tue Nov 11, 2014, 02:59 PM

177. 1969/1970 were the 2 years involved.

I graduated high school in 1970, I'm a Vietnam war marcher.

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Response to lark (Reply #177)

Tue Nov 11, 2014, 10:06 PM

186. I have long ties, great times in FL going way back. Dislike what's happening politically there.

Sister of my bro. in law saw Morrison at the FL concert. Tried to go to Balto. to see Hendricks when young, Dad said no trip. I grad. 1971, civics, history classes and teachers were excellent. Never heard anti-commie, pro-cap. stuff ever. That was in WV, then a blue state with a long, tough labor union history b/c of coal. Many student anti-war activists at the college in Huntington, Marshall Univ. There I saw speakers B. Fuller, Julian Bond, Abby Hoffman, Angela D., others.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:12 PM

84. Me.

It was a required course. I went to high school from 1962 to 1964.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:12 PM

85. The RW is pushing for mandated civic classes. But if they get control

of actual curriculum--actually topics, I am sure it will be all about patriotism-of the RW sort.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:13 PM

86. I did, grauated from h.s. in '62, and there's little doubt in my mind

that the 'dumbing down' of our students via curriculum 'games' is and will play a large role in the demise of the U.S.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:13 PM

88. It was a graduation requirement at my

Northern California High School in 1985.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:16 PM

89. Civics, ninth grade, required, 1978

 

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:17 PM

90. I did

Private catholic prep school. We took that one semester and social justice the next semester.Social Justice was a good follow up even if it was faith based ie - feeding the poor and hungry, community service, community action - this was in 1990 so the tail end of the liberation Theology movement.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:23 PM

97. They still had civics when I was in school....

 

But that was so long ago they still taught the history of the labor movement.

Including how actual POLICE used to beat the hell out of the workers under orders from the boss.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:23 PM

98. Idiocracy

 


Idiocracy is a 2006 American satirical science fiction comedy film directed by Mike Judge and starring Luke Wilson, Maya Rudolph, Dax Shepard, and Terry Crews. The film tells the story of two people who take part in a top-secret military hibernation experiment, only to awaken 500 years later in a dystopian society wherein advertising, commercialism, and cultural anti-intellectualism have run rampant and dysgenic pressure has resulted in a uniformly unthinking society devoid of intellectual curiosity, social responsibility, and coherent notions of justice and human rights.

There are even some fox (so called) news promos in the movie.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:24 PM

99. Junion Year of High School

It was called Government and Economics

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:27 PM

102. They called it "Americanism versus Communism" when I took it in the 1960s

That was the official title of the class but everyone called it civics.

Most of the class was trying to push how much better capitalism was than communism - but even in the 60s I knew that what the USSR had was not true communism and could see the abuses of capitalism.

The teacher taught us that Americans don't have to provide ID to walk the streets or to vote, while in communist countries, people have to carry ID at all time and show them to any authority that asked for it. My, how things have changed!

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:28 PM

103. This Boomer had civics class in 7th or 8th grade (a requirement) back "in the day"

and the teacher was nearly everyone's very favorite because she made it all really interesting. I grew up in a small KY town of 5,200 and went to public school. Now, that seems remarkable when I see how absent any of that is from my grandchildren's education except around a presidential election and they had "elections" in elementary school for a day or two.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:32 PM

105. Civics was in 8th Grade in HS it was 'Americanism vs Communism'

 

Yes that was an actual class and required for graduation, they had a book and everything.
As anyone with half a brain can imagine it was 100% pure propaganda.

By the time I took the class I had already complete AP US and World History, yes I picked up 12 semester hours total after taking the test, forget what it was called. At one point I wanted to be a history major.

Lucky for me I was regularly, daily and always just before this class, indulging in the sweet leaf so I really did not care what BS they said. BTW I got an A in the class.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:38 PM

106. Junior High in the great State of Minnesota.

They don't teach civics in Texas. Not in the last 40 - 50 years. That should tell you something about the state of the State of Texas.

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Response to malokvale77 (Reply #106)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:49 PM

115. Do you think it different now in NY, CA or IL? nt

 

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Response to branford (Reply #115)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:54 PM

121. I don't know.

You would have to ask somebody from those states.

I know about Texas and I know the lack of knowledge has damaged this state greatly.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:39 PM

107. I did

Being the youngest person on DU, its great that civics is still going on.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:40 PM

109. Civics

It was required. I think it was junior or senior year in high school, so would have been late 60's. We had the greatest teacher for the class--she had us go through a whole mock election to really learn the process. I still remember how we had to break up into groups of delegates, had to select our candidates, campaign, have conventions and speeches with signs, confetti, and finally elections. (Hand counted paper ballots!!!)

She also had us learn about the stock market in a similar way. Several people had to come up with a fake product, sell shares to finance the development, trade them, etc.

Her classes were never boring. We were really sad when she left mid year to go to the Peace Corps, which had been her dream. She really made learning how the government works interesting and fun, not dry and tedious. (Thanks Miss Guido!!)

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:40 PM

110. Grade 12. Not only did I as a district requirement but also AP US Govt! nt

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:40 PM

111. I took Civics in high school. n/t

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:42 PM

112. It was required. Back then. A long time ago... ::sigh:: n/t

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:48 PM

114. Maybe the reason millennials aren't voting is because they truly do understand, better than

 

people want to admit. Wouldn't that be a kick in the pants?

Maybe not because they didn't take a class, maybe because they are being taught by the same broken adults that are running the asylum. Broken adults manufacture broken children. And there are a lot more broken adults than want to admit it.

Lots of things we do in spite of "schooling, not because of it. And more than a few things in reaction to it.


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Response to jtuck004 (Reply #114)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:53 PM

119. I believe Maher made a similar point not too long ago

He was talking about how we seem to have pretty shitty politicians across the board. He said something along the liens of "Maybe it's not the politicians that suck, maybe it's just us. These people are raised by Americans, taught in American schools and worked for American companies."

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Response to Alittleliberal (Reply #119)

Tue Nov 11, 2014, 12:06 AM

165. You could not have found a more Progressive state than Oklahoma. The people today are

 

the culmination of that, about 120 ish years later, raised by those people who were discussed in the WPA reports, an absolute pioneer in adult vocational education that helped millions of people work toward something better - for almost no money out of pocket for the students - where the freakin' governor sent t the Oklahoma Guard out to protect the interests of the people from Texas...

they raised the brutish, cowardly bullies you see today, out "where the waving wheat, it sure smells sweet...", this rotten egg odor.

So yeah.


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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:50 PM

117. 9th grade it was required.

 

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:52 PM

118. I had Government class in 12th grade. It was taught by the football coach & he would wheel a TV into

class every day so we'd watch the Watergate Hearings for an hour for the last couple weeks of school, lol. I think they started the middle of May, 1973. I fell in love with Sam Ervin and politics.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:53 PM

120. My daughter attended a "Blue Ribbon" high school in

California (graduated in 2011). Students were required to take one semester of government in 12th grade. It wasn't enough. Kids today are woefully uninformed about the workings of government as well as real news, as opposed to entertainment/gossip. However, the MSM wants to be sure they are as uninformed as possible and therefore feeds them a steady diet of Kardashian crap. Guarantee 99% of all middle to high school age kids in the country could pick Miley Cyrus out of a lineup. However they are completely clueless about their state's US Senators and other elected officials.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 06:56 PM

124. That was my favorite class. To say that it's only a requirement in 9 states explains a lot.

Some of the stuff that righties post on facebook, huffpo, etc is completely insane when it comes to how the US Gov't is run.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 07:08 PM

125. US Government and Civics...

... plus US History. Sophomore-Junior years in HS. Aced them. One reason I made As in History was because I hated my teacher.

They started dumbing down the kids around the millineals time. At least in my children's school. I protested it to no avail. Didn't matter. Momma taught them history and government at home. They all vote every election too, straight Democrat.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 07:12 PM

126. We were required to take a government test to graduate.

I live in Illinois and graduated in the 70s.

This course was a semester long and covered how the govt ran. I found it boring at the time mainly because I was a typical teenager ... but to graduate from high school, a passing grade was required. I thought that that was standard. Silly me.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 07:12 PM

127. 9th grade in Michigan 1960....

...but I haven't heard of anyone tacking this since. My kids didn't take it! It seems like its the stupefying of our nation. Could have been taken away on purpose?

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 07:19 PM

129. 8th grade for me

 

I was just talking to my brother about this the other night. We obviously have now idea how the system of government works as a whole in this country. Why isn't it more of a priority?

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Response to Ned_Devine (Reply #129)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 07:35 PM

135. If it were a priority, we'd run the risk of having enganged, interested voters!

 

8th grade for me too. Too young to see the relevance, and too boring of a subject at that age too.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 07:30 PM

132. Here...around 3 decades ago.

But even then, there was no component about evaluating the stances of the candidates or emphasis on how incredibly pervasive government is in every aspect of life. Just dry as dust lectures on how bills go through, the branches of government and their powers, etc.

I can't say it did much to make me interested in voting. For the first decade or so I did, I did simply because my parents did.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 07:31 PM

133. My daughters had to

 

They were born in 1979 and 1984. In NYS they not only had to take Civics to graduate, but also "Participation in Government" even back then. They went to school board meetings, trials, and my younger daughter wrote to local Congressional and Senate candidates asking what they views were. Tim Bishop (Long Island) wrote her a personal letter back addressing everything she asked him. Yeah, she even wrote to Hillary as a Senior in HS. Hillary was her first vote.

Seems to be that Democratic leaning States are far more Civics oriented. Maybe "Red" states don't want their young to educated, and to just be sheep following what they are told to do.

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Response to HockeyMom (Reply #133)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 07:54 PM

147. How many of you, especially Millennials, knew about Electorial votes at 12 years old?

 

I did and they didn't teach me about it in school. I watched the Nixon/Kennedy debates and not because anyone told me too .My parents certainly didn't watch. They were watching the Honeymooners. BORING. I watched every newcast about that election I possibly could, and learned about "civics" amd politcs on my own. No INTERNET in those days, but where there is a will, there is a way to learn.

My parents, and teachers, thought I was crazy. Election night I BEGGED my parents to stay up late (lived in NY) to watch the California returns come in since their electorial votes meant a lot. I don't know if even my parents were counting votes based on that. lol

Civics in school? ROFL

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 07:33 PM

134. I had to take a test on out state constitution

Back when standardized tests had some purpose. We spent a couple of weeks on it in my history class.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 07:36 PM

136. I think there should be a civics/government test

Before your name can be placed on a ballot for any public office. I do mean ANY OFFICE.

I be the folks here could come up with a meaningful test.... we could suggest questions.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 07:41 PM

137. I did, in two nations.

The U.S.A. the later.

Sitting in the U.S.A. class may have given me the inspiration to quit high school for college. I wanted to enjoy some of those civil rights. Being harassed daily and frequently physically assaulted in middle and high school was not fun. My middle and high school experience was often "Lord of the Flies."

In the U.S.A., sixth grade, I'd picked up the name "queerbait."

"Get out of my way, queerbait."

Being a minor human being in college was weird, I made some professors uncomfortable, they felt they had to tone down their teaching to a "PG" rating rather than "R" or "X," but the physical violence ended.

It's a curious thing. I have a generous handful of siblings. The two of us who quit high school are university graduates and beyond. Our high school graduate siblings got distracted by well paid work and business ventures before they finished college.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 07:44 PM

139. I graduated in 1971

It wasn't an option. The closest alternative was Social Studies. Generally a good class but based more on an international focus. Not bad on the whole but with a definite US centered viewpoint.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 07:46 PM

140. It was required for graduation, when I was in high school (IL).

When I was in high school, dinosaurs roamed Earth's cooling crust, but American Government, Illinois Government and the dreaded 'Constitution tests' (U.S. and Illinois) were all required in order to graduate high school. Furthermore, in order to graduate 8th grade, you had to pass the U.S. Constitution test.

This should absolutely be a requirement for graduation from high school.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 07:47 PM

141. I took both in the 80s. I also learned how to use apostrophes.

 

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Response to Codeine (Reply #141)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 08:15 PM

148. Ya that was my bad lol

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 07:50 PM

145. they called it something else in HS. i am a history geek too.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 08:25 PM

150. I don't remember taking a civics class in HS

 

I live in CT. Graduated in the mid-1990s.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 08:29 PM

152. There are a lot of adults that don't know how government functions...

especially those that think the President makes the laws. Or how the house and the senate function.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 08:35 PM

154. Had it in 8th grade

and in 10th grade.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 08:38 PM

155. I think it was called Social Studies way back then.

I still remember in high school we took a field trip to some arena and saw Dwight Eisenhower when he was campaigning for president. It was pretty cool for it's time. Jeez, i'm getting old!

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 10:03 PM

161. I did - 1981 n/t

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 10:07 PM

163. Took Law&Government as a senior year elective, but that was a long time ago

a lot of what i learned there sort of became obsolete after the SCOTUS handed the presidency to dubya

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Mon Nov 10, 2014, 11:26 PM

164. "Is there an argument to be made"?? --- Oh HELL yes!

I would make Civics a distinct class, K-12. And I would make it one of those required for graduation. And I would insist on refresher courses throughout College, undergrad and graduate school. And I would push for courses in all "continuing education" institutions.

"The consent of the governed" would have a lot more heft.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Tue Nov 11, 2014, 01:00 AM

166. i did, mid 1970s

 

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Tue Nov 11, 2014, 01:40 AM

167. We had "Political Science."

I really don't understand what they do study in school anymore.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Tue Nov 11, 2014, 02:13 AM

168. I had Civics class in 8th grade.

I remember my kids watching PBS back in the 70s. They ran civics lessons disguised as cartoons on Schoolhouse Rock every day. Anyone remember, "I'm just a bill, Yes, I'm only a bill, And I'm sitting here on Capitol Hill. ?


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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Tue Nov 11, 2014, 03:22 AM

169. Required in PA schools when i attended (1948-1959) So was PA History. nt

 

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Tue Nov 11, 2014, 11:18 AM

170. I think it was called government and was required. We got that as seniors. I did well but probably

never retained much from that. Most of what I know I've learned in the years after school.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Tue Nov 11, 2014, 11:22 AM

171. I did, late 70's/early 80's ...

... but it wasn't until I got to a liberal arts college in the early 90's that I REALLY learned civics/govt/history. Not just what the textbook makers wanted us to learn.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Tue Nov 11, 2014, 12:38 PM

172. I did, Jurassic Age. nt

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Tue Nov 11, 2014, 02:24 PM

174. i graduated hs in 1973

in california, and it was required for graduation.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Tue Nov 11, 2014, 02:31 PM

176. It inspired me to be politically active

That and history.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Tue Nov 11, 2014, 03:01 PM

178. 8th grade in PA - 67-68 -- the first time I became a star in any class

Until I found politics I was never really interested in anything.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Tue Nov 11, 2014, 03:58 PM

181. Social studies covered a lot the same topics in my education

The teachers that I remember made a point of the dishonesty of politicians and the process which the revelation hardly shocked me. Millennials turn out in much higher numbers in Presidential elections for Obama who seemed to buy into the "change" message.

I think there is a perception of the political process that actually is very real that discourages turnout from millenials more than a specific civics class which more than likely was already covered.

I have many memories of watching "I'm Just a Bill" Schoolhouse Rock which explained the process in very easy to understand ways which including a variety of topics including conjuction function. That isn't to say there isn't huge misinformation but that is due to the overall lack of interest. I've came across set-in-their-ways older people who don't vote and haven't voted in years who actually are very liberal but don't buy into the process for whatever reason.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Tue Nov 11, 2014, 04:33 PM

183. For Me It Was 8th Grade

A state requirement that even the private schools honored. Everybody i knew took it in 8th grade. That was the late 60's.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Tue Nov 11, 2014, 04:45 PM

184. I had Civics in jr high school and an American Government class in

high school. Both mandatory. I also took a Florida History/Geography class in jr high that was not mandatory. This was in Florida in the late 1960's.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Tue Nov 11, 2014, 04:55 PM

185. I dropped out of high school in the 9th grade but when

I went to college I couldn't wait to take History and Intro. to American Politics and, finishing up my degree in my late 40s I took a Constitution class. Kind of a geek, I guess.
I am not sure of the requirements my kids needed, they graduated in 08,10 and 13. I wasn't worried because I knew they were learning from me and their dad. My first lesson to them was "always pay attention to what the government is doing and know your rights".
I am guessing the schools are slacking and many of the parents don't seem to know if their kids are paying attention or what they are learning. I can understand that, working hard just to make the bills. I think many at the top prefer it that way!

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Wed Nov 12, 2014, 12:01 AM

188. United States history and Wyoming government as a sophomore, and AP Poli Sci as a senior. eom

n/t

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Wed Nov 12, 2014, 12:06 AM

189. I believe it was a requirement in Virginia.

But I took AP Government and aced it.

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Response to Alittleliberal (Original post)

Wed Nov 12, 2014, 12:08 AM

190. It was required when I graduated. 10th grade 'civics', and 12th grade 'government'. n/t

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