Bending the Third Rail
Because We Should, We Can, We Do
Wednesday, March 01, 2006
Homer ... Maggie ....
From the Jage, who really should start blogging again:
Study: Few Americans Know 1st Amendment
By ANNA JOHNSON, Associated Press Writer 2 hours, 7 minutes ago

CHICAGO - Americans apparently know more about "The Simpsons" than they do about the First Amendment.

Only one in four Americans can name more than one of the five freedoms guaranteed by the First Amendment (freedom of speech, religion, press, assembly and petition for redress of grievances.) But more than half can name at least two members of the cartoon family, according to a survey.

The study by the new McCormick Tribune Freedom Museum found that 22 percent of Americans could name all five Simpson family members, compared with just one in 1,000 people who could name all five First Amendment freedoms.

Joe Madeira, director of exhibitions at the museum, said he was surprised by the results.

"Part of the survey really shows there are misconceptions, and part of our mission is to clear up these misconceptions," said Madeira, whose museum will be dedicated to helping visitors understand the First Amendment when it opens in April. "It means we have our job cut out for us."

The survey found more people could name the three "American Idol" judges than identify three First Amendment rights. They were also more likely to remember popular advertising slogans.

It also showed that people misidentified First Amendment rights. About one in five people thought the right to own a pet was protected, and 38 percent said they believed the right against self-incrimination contained in the Fifth Amendment was a First Amendment right, the survey found.

The telephone survey of 1,000 adults was conducted Jan. 20-22 by the research firm Synovate and had a margin of error of plus or minus 3 percentage points.
Doh ...

2 Comments:
Blogger Lynne said...
Ignorant people are easier to control.

Blogger mikevotes said...
I often go off on a different version of this. I tend to compare Beatles lyrics to Shakespeare lines, or Elvis songs to bible verses. Or fictional (TV/movie)people you know to real people you know. The amount and depth of crap we have consumed in our pop culture astounds me, especially when compared to the little bit of classical knowledge we have.

Mike