Posts Tagged ‘U. S. Constitution’

Real World Graduation, Question 91: Legal Exemptions

RealWorldGraduation_Question_91_Legal_Exemptions   <– PDF

A Bill was introduced in House of Representatives during the 111th Congress (2009-2010) called H. R. 45 (6 Jan 2009), named “The Blair Holt’s Firearm Licensing and Record of Sale Act of 2009”. The bill, if passed into law, would require

1) Every person to obtain a federal license to buy, sell, or possess any firearm;

2) All persons who owned a firearm prior to enactment of the law to obtain a license for those firearms;

3) Each person to apply for renewal of the license every five years;

4) Payment of a fee to obtain the license;

5) All firearm sales to be permanently recorded in a federal database;

6) All persons seeking to buy or possess a firearm to submit to a background check;

7) A possessor to report theft or loss of a firearm to federal authorities within 72 hours;

8) Secure storage of all firearms such that persons under age 18 cannot access them;

9) Firearms owners to permit the federal government to search without warrants any facility where firearms are stored, manufactured, or held;

10) Persons seeking a license to pass an examination on handling, use, and storage of firearms; and

11) Imposition of various penalties for violations of any of the foregoing.

However, Section 801, called “Inapplicability to Governmental Authorities”, states:

“This Act and the amendments made by this Act shall not apply to any department or agency of the United States, of a State, or of a political subdivision of a State, or to any official conduct of any officer or employee of such a department or agency”.

One of the stated justifications for the bill is “to protect the public against unreasonable risk of injury and death associated with the unrecorded sale or transfer of qualifying firearms to criminals and youth”.

Why is it necessary to exempt every level of the government and their employees from this Act?

a) Requiring government agencies and their employees to comply with this Act would reduce their efficiency.

b) Requiring government agencies and their employees to comply with this Act would cost too much money that could be devoted to more important objectives.

c) Requiring government agencies and their employees to comply with this Act would cause unnecessary confusion over which agency is to defer to which other agency.

d) Requiring government agencies and their employees to comply with this Act would interfere with the powers of the governments under the respective Constitutions.

e) All of the above.

(The answer is on p. 2 of the PDF.)

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Posted in Bill of Rights, critical thinking, Federalist Papers, government powers, gun control, James Madison, Revolutionary War, Second Amendment, U. S. Constitution | No Comments »

Real World Graduation, Question 84: Cabinet Nominations

RealWorldGraduation_Question_84_Cabinet_Nominations   <– PDF

Article 2, Section 2 of the U. S. Constitution states, regarding the office of the President:

“He shall have power, by and with the consent of the Senate, to make treaties, provided two-thirds of the Senators present concur; and he shall nominate, and by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, shall appoint ambassadors, other public ministers and consuls, judges of the Supreme Court, and all other officers of the United States, whose appointments are not herein otherwise provided for, and which shall be established by law; but the Congress may by law vest the appointments of such inferior officers, as they think proper, in the President alone, in courts of law, or in heads of departments.”

The President’s Cabinet members fall under the category of “officers of the United States”, and require confirmation by the Senate.  A member of the U. S. Senate once voted against the creation of a federal Department of Education (although it passed).  But now, many years later, he has been nominated by the President to be the Secretary (head) of the Department of Education.  On what grounds should the Senate confirm or not confirm him?

a) His original opposition to the creation of any federal Department proves that he cannot be trusted to lead any department. Therefore the Senate should not confirm him.

b) The Senate should not confirm him. The fact that he voted against the creation of the Department proves he is opposed to education, so schools will get worse under his “leadership”.

c) The Senate should not confirm him. If he voted against the creation of the Department, then it is likely that he has contempt for teachers, teachers unions, Department of Education workers, and children in general.  Such a person would not command respect within the department.

d) The Senate should confirm him only in the interest of getting him out of the Senate. True, his original vote proves he is unqualified, but he will do less harm overall as a member of the bureaucracy than as a member of the Senate.

e) The Senate should confirm him only if he promises not to change current policy and promises to recuse himself from budget debates; that way, his biases against education will have no practical effect.

(The answer is on p. 2 of the PDF.)

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Posted in Congress, Constitutional Convention, critical thinking, Real World Graduation, U. S. Constitution | No Comments »

Real World Graduation: Question 62: Atheist Persecution

RealWorldGraduation_Question_62_AtheistPersecution   <– PDF

A certain city has experienced a large influx of people who have embraced a hatred of Christianity. They claim to be atheists who claim to reject the concept of God and all religions, but in practice, only seek to offend Christians, and to a lesser extent Judaism.  They never have an unkind word for Moslems, Buddhists, Sikhs, Wiccans, or Hindus.  The atheists have distributed leaflets against “all religion”, but only single out Christian traditions as being evidence of evil, hypocrisy, or ignorance.  The Christians in the community are subjected to the tirades of atheists in many public places, and even on public property.

The atheist groups have become increasingly aggressive, up to the point of calling Christians names on the streets, demonstrating in front of churches during services, and occasionally disrupting a service by physical intrusion. What should the Christians of this community do in response?

a) Appeal to the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) for their help in opposing the atheists, or hire lawyers and sue the city directly in order force the city to enact an ordinance that restrains the activities of the atheist groups.

b) Close all the churches.

c) Organize and stage counter-demonstrations whenever they find a group of atheists.

d) Appeal to the Civil Rights Commission or other federal government agencies for help against the atheists (since they are violating the rights of Christians).

e) Both a) and d) are viable options.

(The answer is p. 2 of the PDF.)

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Posted in Bill of Rights, critical thinking, First Amendment, Real World Graduation, U. S. Constitution | No Comments »

RealWorldGraduation_Question_54_PledgeOfAllegiance   <–  PDF

In 1892, in preparation for the celebration of the 400th anniversary of Columbus’ discovery of America, a magazine in Boston called The Youth’s Companion published a “pledge to the flag” to be recited by schoolchildren.  It is believed to have been written either by Francis Bellamy or James Upham.  The pledge has undergone several revisions in the years since; it currently reads:

“I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the republic for which it stands, one nation under God, indivisible, with justice and liberty for all.”

Although it was originally devised for schoolchildren, it was eventually adopted in 1942 as part of the United States Flag Code (U. S. C. Title 36). What is the purpose of such a pledge?

a) To inspire people to be proud of living in a nation that has liberty and justice for all

b) To emphasize that only people who believe in God can be Americans

c) To remind people that America cannot be divided

d) To confirm that the people are the ultimate sovereign in America

e) A combination of a), c), and d)

(The answer is shown on p. 2 of the PDF.)

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Posted in Benjamin Franklin, Bill of Rights, critical thinking, government powers, Real World Graduation, U. S. Constitution | No Comments »