A recent study conducted by the McCormick Tribune Freedom Museum revealed some decidedly discouraging news: far more people can name all the members of the Simpson family than can name the five rights provided by the First Amendment to the US Constitution. How large was the disparity? Huge: 22% of Americans could name all five Simpson family members while only one in 1,000 could name all five First Amendment freedoms.
Ok, I agree that’s pretty pathetic, but I can see not being able to name all five. There is that one niggling one about the right to petition… But the survey highlighted some other disturbing notions:
- 17% thought the right to drive a car was protected
- While 28% could name two freedoms granted, 52% could name at least two Simpsons characters
- More people (24%) could name the three American Idol judges than three of the five rights (7%)
- Twenty percent thought you had the inalienable right to own a pet
- Almost 40% said the right against self-incrimination was included. (Apparently, these people aren’t familiar with the term “plead the Fifth.”)