Thursday, March 09, 2006

Simpsons Beat the Constitution

Statistically it appears that Americans know more about the Simpsons than their own rights.
According to a Freedom Museum poll of 1000 adults, only twenty percent of Americans can name more than one freedom listed by the Constitution (freedom of speech, religion, press, assembly and petition for redress of grievances). More could name three of the American Idol judges than three of their political freedoms.

In fact, 22 percent could name all five Simpson family members. And only one--one in 1000 polled--could name all five freedoms.

It would be easy to lament the education level of Americans, or bemoan America's lack of political acuteness. However, these statistics (as with most statistics) cannot be naively reduced to preconcieved notions--it could be that this poll shows the power of capitalistic repitition.

TV, movies, commercial and internet naturally do not emphasize the latest political theory or modern fads in sociology. They shove the newest soap, greatest song and loudest car ads into our collective faces, as fast as they can and as much as they can. But, then, that is the nature of the beast. Carpet-bombing advertisements about the Constitution would make no money.

This poll is sad, but what is more depressing is the fact that most Americans would have it so. They like their entertainment and avoid difficult ideas. Slogans and sound-bytes are easy to digest; debating the nature and application of our freedoms is not so easy.

Biblically this is best remedied by faithful churches that challenge Christians to think, and to think biblically.


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