Examine the course offerings at most of our colleges and universities and you will see an abundance of them hectoring students about all the real and imagined evils of America. On the other hand, you will pretty much look in vain for any that are dedicated to the Founding and our framework for liberty.
In today’s Martin Center article, Anthony Hennen reflects on that failing.
Does that gaping intellectual hole matter? Yes, Hennen argues:
As Rebecca Burgess of the American Enterprise Institute told the Harvard Political Review in 2017, “If a third of adult Americans don’t even know what the three branches of government are, that there are three branches of government, that we have a separation of powers, then . . . our ideas of what government ought to be doing will be different from people who think that there are three branches of government.” Ignorance about civics enables politicians to abuse their power because its citizens don’t accept their civic responsibility.
Exactly. The lack of understanding of our constitutional structure among the population certainly helped President Obama to trample all over the rule of law as he did.
Don’t college students have to take U.S. History? At a great many schools, they don’t. Their “history” requirement can be satisfied with an array of courses having nothing to do with America. Besides, the way most history profs view the nation, the Founding was just a power play by rich, white slave-owners.
There is an opportunity here for colleges that want to distinguish themselves from the badly deficient pack.