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Why YOU should care about the Constitution (REALLY!)


Hold on... I know what you’re thinking: "The Constitution? Oh, you mean the old document that was written by those guys who wore leggings and powdered wigs. Why should I care about its 225 anniversary?"

Well, if you, like the rest of our generation, enjoy posting on Twitter, checking in with your friends on Facebook or watching the latest YouTube Video, then you should really care about the Constitution.

Many kids take these everyday rights for granted. At least I did before my mother made me sit down on the hammock during my spring break three years ago and listen as she read the Constitution aloud. I stopped when she read the first amendment.
"You mean, this is the only thing that prevents the government from censoring what kind of church I attend or what newspapers I read?!" My mother simply nodded her head. The Constitution quickly went up on my "Most Important List".

When I later reread the Constitution, it all made sense. The seven articles in the Constitution list what our government can and can’t do. The first ten amendments, "The Bill Of Rights", then list a certain number of our precious rights.

However, without the Articles, our government could turn into a dictatorship, leaving us with no structure of government, and our amendments would mean nothing.

When I truly realized the importance of our Constitution, I became involved in my mother Janine Turner's, foundation, "Constituting America." I am currently the National Youth Director for Constituting America and it is my job to get my generation excited about the Constitution.

It is also my job to spread the word about the "We The People 9.17 Contest," an annual contest hosted by Constituting America. All you have to do is create an original work explaining what the Constitution means to you and why we should all care about it…

Lower School (Kindergarten-5th Grade): You can either draw a picture of what the Constitution means to you or compose a short poem.
Middle School (6th Grade-8th Grade): You can write an essay or compose an original song (think: American Idol) about the importance of the Constitution.
High School (9th Grade-12th Grade): You can compose an original song, direct (or act in) a short film (we all love to use our camera phones), film a Public Service Announcement or write an essay on what the Constitution means to you.
All works are judged by a panel of celebrity judges!
The best part is there are great prizes for the winner of each category. Every winner receives a trip to Philadelphia on Constitution Day and gets to star in a documentary, which is filmed by Constituting America and is distributed to schools nationwide. Plus, each High School winner receives $1,000.

So don't hesitate to enter the "We The People 9.17 Contest"! Entries are due July 4th. Visit www.ConstitutingAmerica.org. And remember, “We the people” means us kids too!

Juliette Turner, 14

BY JULIETTE TURNER ON 4/18/2012 1:38:00 PM


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