Talkin’ bout the Constitution

man on motorcycle

The US Constitution – I saw it once, on a family trip to Washington, D.C. The document itself didn’t do much for me – some paper that kind of looked like an ancient treasure map. The system used to protect it, however, that was another matter. I was floored by how much thought and effort went into keeping those withered pieces of paper secure. Bulletproof glass, alarms, lasers, an atomic bomb proof vault deep below the earth. It’s all very Armageddon. But, honestly, what is the big deal? It’s on the Internet, I can look it up anytime I want – why go to such lengths to protect the original? Shouldn’t we use those resources to protect other precious things like jewels, Apple’s trade secrets, Tinkerbell…?

Over a decade later I’m finally really grasping just what the constitution (both as a symbol and in reality) actually means – and as we like to say in Minnesota, it’s kind of a big deal. TPT National Productions’ (I know! We produce national PBS content at tpt) latest project is CONSTITUTION USA with Peter Sagal, and as you may have heard, this ain’t your average PBS documentary. First, host Peter Sagal is from the very funny “Wait, Wait! Don’t Tell Me!; secondly, he travels the country in a tricked-out red, white and blue Harley; third he’s on a serious fact finding mission…

These days, it seems can’t turn around without bumping into an infringement or perceived infringement of the constitution – gay rights, gun control, freedom of speech… So, what’s all the brouhaha, and does it even matter?

CONSTITUTION USA with Peter Sagal is on Tuesdays in May at 8 p.m. Check it out and add to your constitutional knowledge – beyond the School House Rock preamble song, that is (you know you know it). Once the program has aired, you’ll be able to watch it online, right here.