Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Yaaay!!! I'm a citizen!!!

Today in our government class our instructor sprung a pop quiz on us. I passed it (yay) but what was more surprising to me are the number of students that didn't. From our class of around 30, the show of hands indicated at least 23 did not pass...and the rest of us by just one or two answers.

What was this pop quiz that saw so many failures you ask? It was the exam given to would be U.S. citizen hopefuls before they can precede on to the next step of swearing their oath of allegiance. It consists of 10 questions and at least 6 must be right in order to pass. I got 7 right....and this actually surprised me because it has been a very long time since I sat in a govt. class...much less thought about any of those subjects asked about. I was even more surprised that those high numbers that failed in our class were mainly younger students that probably had govt. classes within the past 2 or 3 years...not to mention some of those questions were pretty basic information.

Shades of Jay Leno's stupid Americans segment came to mind...seriously...very sad.

Anyhow...here's the questions we were asked. I want you guys to answer the questions as best you can...WITHOUT googling (yeah that means YOU) just to see how "American" you are and to judge whether or not you could pass the same test would be Americans have to pass to be considered American citizen criteria.

Try not to look at other people's answers either....at least not until you hit submit. I won't put the answers until some people have had a go.

1. What stops one branch of government from becoming too powerful.

2. How many amendments to the constitution are there?

3. How many House of Representatives have the power to vote?

4. What are the rights of a U.S. citizen?

5. Who has the right to vote?

6. Who is one of the 3 authors of the Federalist Papers?

7. What territory did the U.S. buy from France?

8. Who was the president during WWI?

9. Name one of the territories of the U.S.?

10. Why does the flag have 13 stripes?

Just so you know, I missed #'s 3, 6, ad 8...which I thought wasn't too bad. How well can you do?

Have fun...remember...NO cheating!!!


.::Tuttie::. said...


1) checks and balances. or more specific? veto power?

2)24...I think.

3) all of them? and vote on what?

4) Bill of rights. life liberty and the pursuit of happiness I think. Right to vote, right to own property, guns. Right to a trial by jury. Right to not be forced to host soldiers in one's home. Right to demonstrate, freedom of speech (to a certain extent), freedom to gather (once all the permits are in order). Freedom to practice whatever religion you want.

5) US Citizens

6) Thomas Paine.

7) The Lousiana Purchase

8) Franklin D. Roosevelt. I think he served like 12+years because of the war.

9) Guam, PR,

10) 13 original colonies.

Jaz said...

Wow I'd never be able to become a citizen, I can't answer half of these! We studied american government systems in school but that was a couple of years ago and I can't remember anymore :(

Congratulations on being one of the few who passed!

Nikki said...

The only one I'm 100% sure on is the Louisiana Purchase. I know Indiana was a territory as well prior to statehood. Do they mean a present day territory, though? Gah! I renounce my citizenship, lol.

(i graduated from college just this May with straight A's...we had only one semester of govn't in highschool. That was all that was required)

And I'm totally impressed, Tuttie!

Angel Darling said...

I think I did pretty good, but even so, I either just barely missed it or just barely passed. What was the Federalist Paper?

Anonymous said...

Eeek, I would really have to study if I were to pass the citizenship test!!!
#1 I think checks & balances
#2 ?
#3 ?
#4 to bear arms and free speech? :p
#5 18 years and up, have to be a citizen
#6 ?
#7 ?
#8 ?
#9 Guam
#10 original colonies

Lynn said...

#1 I think checks & balances
#2 19? No, that's wrong.
#3 All of them?
#4 do we have to list all of them?#5 18 years and up, have to be a citizen and I think non felon.
#6 Jefferson?
#7 Louisiana?
#8 Roosevelt?
#9 Puerto Rico
#10 they represent the original colonies

Yeah, I guess I better pack my bags...

caraboska said...

1. Separation of powers provides a system of checks and balances.

2. ???

3. 435

4. Life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness

5. In principle, anyone over 18. In practice, states can introduce certain limitations, for example, that you cannot be a convicted felon (especially if you have not yet served out your jail term).

6. Alexander Hamilton

7. Louisiana

8. ???

9. Virgin Islands

10. Because the original number of states in the United States was 13.

Susanne said...

Wow, you did great! I don't know all the answers, but I guessed at the ones I didn't know for sure. I'm glad I did better than the young'uns in your class, at least! Or I think I did! :)

1. Three branches (legislative, judicial, executive) so the power is not in one person/group

2. 20 -- don't know

3. all of them ... errrrrrr, they are based on state's populations and I can't remember how many there are, but over 400 -- Senators I know are 100 (2 per state)

4. right to bear arms, freedom of religion, assembly, the press, speech.. blah, blah, blah

5. citizens 18 or above (or 17 in a primary if you will be 18 on election day), non-felons

6. Thomas Jefferson

7. Louisiana

8. Hoover

9. Virgin Islands

10. the original thirteen colonies

Elisa said...

Good job!!! Last Christmas my mom (who is not an American citizen. She's from Italy) got my hubby (who's Moroccan) one of the study books to taking the citizenship test kind of as a funny gag gift. My mom and I decided to have a go at it and see how much we know. . .yeah, it was a rude awakening! LoL I'm pretty sure I would have my citizenship taken away if I had to take that test! YIKES!

coolred38 said...

Thank you everyone that gave it a go. You may all now start packing and head for the deportation section of the nearest airports. Ha ha. Here are the answers.

1. There are 27 amendments to the constitution.

2. A system of checks & balances prevents undue power for one branch or another.

3. 435

4. Those who have to right to vote are obviously U.S. citizens, 18 years or older, non felon (which sort of disqualifies half of Washington far as Im concerned)

5. What are the rights of a U.S. citizen? The right to vote, run for office, hold a govt position.

6. Who is one of 3 authors for the Federalist Papers? James Madison, John Hamilton, John Jay. These are a series of essays written proclaiming how our constitution was the best choice for a fledgling United States.

7. What did we buy from France nearly tripiling the size of the United States at that time? Louisiana Territory

8. Who was the president during WWII? Harry S. Truman

9. Name one of the territories of the U.S. Puerto Rico, Guam, Virgin Islands,Northern Mariana Islands along with several uninhabited islands.

10. Why does the flag have 13 stripes? The original 13 colonies.

cairo, lusaka, amsterdam said...

Not American so I won't try and answer but the same thing happens here in the Netherlands: the test given to would-be citizens is usually too hard for actual Dutch people.
Ridiculous -__-

Anonymous said...

1, The fact that each branch can overrule the other.

2, no idea

3, no idea (all of them?)

4, no idea

5, Any citizen of the US or its territories over the age of 18?

6, Alexander Hamilton

7, Louisiana

8, Howard Wilson

9, Puerto Rico

10, The original states that existed when the US was formed (the former 13 colonies)

Marahm said...

I merely read the questions, didn't even bother to think up the answers. This reminds me of when my (ex)husband was studying for his citizenship exam. He was astounded that I didn't know the answers.

The fact that most of us (Americans, that is) flunked may not be such a bad sign. Do any of us really need that information in the conduct of our daily lives? If we needed it, we'd Google it.

I suppose there's a case to be made for teaching civic history in school, yes, but we then forget what we don't need.

Perhaps the fact that we forget these things indicates that we feel secure in their proper functioning.