This assignment – refer to instruction in syllabus. Read assigned pages in the “Democracy in 21st Century America” (PDF) book and the articles for this unit. Take notes on all of the assigned readings. Then, in an extended memo format using the format provided below:
a) The Struggle for Civil Rights: The struggle for equal rights has been a struggle that has existed from our nation’s founding. The Constitution speaks of securing the blessings of liberty for all; however, this promise has not always been kept. The history of the Constitution is a story of struggle between people, factions, sectors and branches. It is a struggle that still goes on to this day. African Americans, Asian Americans, Hispanic Americans, Native Americans, women, the disabled, and the LGBTQ community have all faced unequal treatment in the legal system, the job market and in schools (to name a few places) and have had to fight to secure and win equal treatment under the law.
b) Public Opinion & Why It Matters and Why public opinion SHOULD matter: We talk a lot about “We the people” in American politics. Thomas Jefferson argued: “Government must get its powers from the ‘consent of the governed’.” Abraham Lincoln extended this idea with noting that Government should be “of the people, by the people and for the people.” And V.O Keys noted that unless the views of the masses of the people “have some place in the shaping of policy, all talk about democracy is non-sense.” Thinking about the way things seem to be in the 21st century so far;
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