Discover – civics you were not taught………
You’re probably thinking, “but I am a good citizen.” And in fact, you probably are, based on what you learned in school and through the media. Unfortunately, you, like the rest of us, were not taught many of the core principles of our country, the reasons for them, and the impact of not following them.

If we do not understand the founding principles, how can we know if we are following them? The reality is that we are steadily drifting away from the country our founders gave us. The result is that we are headed toward a financial collapse (view the Fiscal Cliff video). Following the original intent of the constitution would avoid this fiscal problem, but this will not happen until enough of us understand these principles and take action to insure they are followed.

The Myth: The U.S. is a Democracy
Consider this: virtually every day, we hear phrases like, “our Democracy,” “their Democracy,“ “encourage Democracy,” “they’re not ready for Democracy.” The implication is that we are a Democracy and it is a good thing and what other countries should be striving for. However, this country was not founded as a democracy, but as a Republic.

In fact, James Madison said in Federalist 10: “Hence it is that such democracies have ever been spectacles of turbulence and contention; have ever been found incompatible with personal security or the rights of property; and have in general been as short in their lives as they have been violent in their deaths. Theoretic politicians, who have patronized this species of government, have erroneously supposed that by reducing mankind to a perfect equality in their political rights, they would, at the same time, be perfectly equalized and assimilated in their possessions, their opinions, and their passions.”

Similarly, John Adams said, “Remember, a Democracy never lasts long. It soon wastes, exhausts, and murders itself. There never was a Democracy yet that did not commit suicide.”

But Benjamin Franklin (reportedly) said it best, “Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch.”

Can you really believe that people that felt this way gave us a Democracy? So why do we call ourselves a Democracy?

The Truth: the U.S. Is a Republic
If we studied our founding history and principles well enough, we would not call ourselves a Democracy, we would rightly call ourselves a Republic. Yet most people do not understand the fundamental differences between a Democracy and a Republic.

Here is another clue that you did not learn fundamental principles; a Republic, as our founders used the term, is based on Natural Law. Do you even know what Natural Law is?

Our founder’s greatest fear, that we would not teach the founding principles to our citizens, was expressed by Thomas Jefferson when he said: “If a nation expects to be ignorant & free, in a state of civilization, it expects what never was & never will be.”

Our founders recognized that democracy was the best form of government at the time of the founding, and they worked hard to design a government that overcame its deficiencies.

Not convinced yet? Then take this test. It’s a civics test used by the Intercollegiate Studies Institute (ISI) designed to test the amount of civics knowledge students gained at college. They found that much of the time, students scored lower after completing college, the average score an “F,” the same as the general public and their professors. What is even scarier is that politicians, on average, score slightly lower than the average public!

How is it possible to be a responsible citizen if one does not understand the principles of our government? The reality is that it’s not possible, because ours is a government where the people are the gatekeepers.

Without knowledge, one cannot make informed decisions. As James Madison said, “A well-instructed people alone can be permanently a free people.”

So Challenge yourself to take the next step…….LEARN.

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