Daily Newspaper and Tourism Guide

for Trans Pecos, Big Bend, Far West Texas

Golden Years|__|Living off the Land|__|Subscribe Enterprise|
Advertising|__|Alpine Avalanche|__|Monahans News|__|E-Forum|__|Lotto
Links|__|Photos|__|Archives|__|Classified|__|ENTERPRISE HOME PAGE


July 11, 1997


By Mac McKinnon

Could citizens pass
citizenship test?

Skip to next item
Andy Rooney recently concluded the weekly 60 Minutes show on CBS with a
commentary on citizenship and immigrants.

He discussed the fact that immigrants are required to pass a test to
become citizens. Then he suggested that citizens be given a test to keep
their citizenship or else be deported.

Now, that might be a little extreme but his point was that many people
are terribly unaware of our history and what goes on in this nation.
Being a nation of the people and by the people seems to be ignored. The
only part of the constitution some people are interested in is "for the

It does seem strange and insulting in a way to those who are native
born Americans that immigrants know more about our country that we do.

And from what I understand, they also care more as their voting record
is better than ours.

Rooney suggested that native born Americans should have to take a test.
He didn't say how often but that a test be given, and if citizens fail,
they should be sent to some other country. I don't know what country
that would be, I suppose one of their choosing.

Some of the questions he posed to be part of the test were simple
enough. However, as I found out later, many people I posed those
questions to couldn't answer them.

The questions included naming our two U.S. Senators, the minimum age to
vote, how old a person has to be to be president, names of the 13
original colonies, who is the chief justice of the U.S. Supreme Court,
what do the colors in the U.S. flag represent, how many stars are on the
U.S. flag - there were 10 in all but I don't remember the rest.

The only ones I couldn't answer right off were the names of the
original 13 colonies and the name of the chief justice of the Supreme
Court. But, at least I would have passed the test with an 80. My guess
on the Supreme Court was the name of another justice, not the chief
justice. And I did get most of the 13 original states.

How would you have done on those questions I listed?

The point is that we should know these things. Our country should be
important to us and what it stands for and how it works. It appears to
me that immigrants appreciate what we have here far more than we do, and
that is shameful.

As I've said many times in this space, people in this country need to
get a taste of life in other countries to appreciate what we have here.
Sure, the United States has its share of problems, but we are so far
ahead of others it isn't even close.

We do need to vote and get involved in our communities more than we do
and take care of our environment better as citizens. We need to remember
that this country is us. Sometimes we want to blame others for our
problems when many problems start with the fact that we are not involved
to help find solutions.

Something to think about.

EDITOR'S NOTE: Mac McKinnon is editor and publisher of the Pecos Enterprise. His column appears on Friday.


Bad decisions hint at teenager mindset

Return to top
Adolescents' risky behavior may be linked to something far worse than
bad decision-making: suicide attempts.

In 1950, among 15- to 24-year-olds, suicide attempts were rare, 4.5 per
100,000. In 1990, suicide attempts among that age group had climbed to
13.2 per 100,000. A study this year of acting out, using data from a
Youth Risk Behavior Study of 3,000 students, found that teens who engage
in risky behavior are more likely to have tried suicide.

Risky behavior included not wearing a seat belt, smoking cigarettes or
using smokeless tobacco, abusing drugs or alcohol, fighting, carrying a
gun or having unprotected sex after substance use. Kids who take those
risks are likely to have tried suicide, the authors say. Using risky
behavior as a guide, the study authors correctly identified whether or
not 92 percent of the teens had attempted suicide.

Parents might want to consider, then, not just getting angry about bad
decisions. They might also want to be concerned, very concerned, and act
on that concern.

-- The State, Columbia, S.C.

Pecos Enterprise
Mac McKinnon, Publisher
Division of Buckner News Alliance, Inc.
324 S. Cedar St., Pecos, TX 79772
Phone 915-445-5475, FAX 915-445-4321
Associated Press text, photo, graphic, audio and/or video material shall not be published, broadcast, rewritten for broadcast or publication or redistributed directly or indirectly in any medium. Neither these AP Materials nor any portion thereof may be stored in a computer except for personal and non-commercial use. The AP will not be held liable for any delays, inaccuracies, errors or omissions therefrom or in the transmission or delivery of all or any part thereof or for any damages arising from any of the foregoing.

Copyright 1997 by Pecos Enterprise
We support Newspapers in Education

Return to Top

Return to Home Page