A Republic, if you can keep it
After the Constitutional Convention of 1787, a woman approached Benjamin Franklin and asked him, “what have we got- a Republic or a Monarchy?” and Franklin replied, “A Republic… if you can keep it.”
Benjamin Franklin, like many of the Founding Fathers, knew that education and knowledge among the people was the best way to preserve democracy and liberty. Unfortunately, Americans today, particularly younger ones, are becoming increasingly historically illiterate. According to the Annenberg Public Policy Center, only about a quarter of K-12 students are proficient in history, civics and geography. Even worse, this level of knowledge declines as students get older. Many believe that this lack of basic historical and civic knowledge put our ability to govern ourselves at risk.
American citizens need to be educated about their history and government structure in order to maintain freedom and be informed voters. This site offers facts about the current education problem, perspectives on why the problem exists, an interactive civics quiz and links to important websites and documents.
Photo Credit: National Archives