Great Debates: High Schooler Challenges Bachmann on Constitution, Stewart to Spar O'Reilly

Michele Bachmann's grasp of US history and the Constitution is notoriously selective ('gap-filled,' 'wrong,' 'banal' or 'dunderheaded,' if we're being less polite) and so you might say her advantage in debates about such things is a handicap. But what about against a high school sophomore -- she should be able to ace that one, right? Well... a high school sophomore doesn't think so.

Amy Myers of New Jersey is taking her to task. An open letter:

Dear Representative Bachmann,

My name is Amy Myers. I am a Cherry Hill, New Jersey sophomore attending Cherry Hill High School East. As a typical high school student, I have found quite a few of your statements regarding The Constitution of the United States, the quality of public school education and general U.S. civics matters to be factually incorrect, inaccurately applied or grossly distorted. The frequency and scope of these comments prompted me to write this letter.  

Though I am not in your home district, or even your home state, you are a United States Representative of some prominence who is subject to national media coverage. News outlets and websites across this country profile your causes and viewpoints on a regular basis. As one of a handful of women in Congress, you hold a distinct privilege and responsibility to better represent your gender nationally. The statements you make help to serve an injustice to not only the position of Congresswoman, but women everywhere. Though politically expedient, incorrect comments cast a shadow on your person and by unfortunate proxy, both your supporters and detractors alike often generalize this shadow to women as a whole.

Rep. Bachmann, the frequent inability you have shown to accurately and factually present even the most basic information about the United States led me to submit the follow challenge, pitting my public education against your advanced legal education:

I, Amy Myers, do hereby challenge Representative Michele Bachmann to a Public Forum Debate and/or Fact Test on The Constitution of the United States, United States History and United States Civics.

It must be pointed out that Amy Myers is totally awesome [and if anyone wants to bet on Bachmann, we'll gladly put our money on Myers]. That is, if Bachmann takes her up on the offer, which is about as likely as Bachmann nabbing the presidency... still, if she's dying for publicity at some point in the election cycle, this is a good way to grab ratings that rival Celebrity Apprentice.

And in other debate news: on Monday night's O'Reilly factor, good old Bill will debate Jon Stewart on the laughable non-brouhaha over rapper Common's invite to the White House poetry event last night. Stewart, who clearly knows more about hip-hop than any Fox host can even fathom, has done a great job of skewering the controversy-stokers over the last week. Meanwhile, Bill O'Reilly is a known hater of hip-hop, and has done some notorious segments that rap fans still re-YouTube and laugh at. (Cam'ron and Damon Dash, in particular.) Stewart is clearly going to PWN Bill a hundred times over, and it's going to make for awesome television. Still, though -- it's pretty depressing that hip-hop gets trotted out as a reflection of society's ills again and again, while GOP faves like Toby Keith can toss around racist crap all over the place and Fox News doesn't blink. (Or, as Stewart pointed out in his first segment, in the case of known creep Ted Nugent, it defends them.) It's a point Cam'ron, of all people, made in the above linked video, in 2006, so maybe Stewart will reference his Purple Hazeness.

AlterNet / By Julianne Escobedo Shepherd

Posted at May 14, 2011, 4:24am

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