I’m disgusted – but not altogether surprised – to learn that many candidates for election don’t know very much about the nation they want to help (?) govern.
US elected officials scored abysmally on a test measuring their civic knowledge, with an average grade of just 44 percent, the group that organized the exam said Thursday.
Ordinary citizens did not fare much better, scoring just 49 percent correct on the 33 exam questions compiled by the Intercollegiate Studies Institute (ISI).
“It is disturbing enough that the general public failed ISI’s civic literacy test, but when you consider the even more dismal scores of elected officials, you have to be concerned,” said Josiah Bunting, chairman of the National Civic Literacy Board at ISI.
“How can political leaders make informed decisions if they don’t understand the American experience?” he added.
The exam questions covered American history, the workings of the US government and economics.
I couldn’t agree more, Mr. Bunting! Perhaps it should be mandatory for candidates to pass this test before they qualify to stand for election.
If you’re interested, you can take the test here. I’m an immigrant, and never studied US civics in school at all, but I still answered 32 questions out of 33 correctly, for a score of 96.97%. Come on, readers – particularly US-born readers – beat that!