The same old issues keep re-appearing on our political landscape.

This is an update on a recurring issue.


​Defective Teaching Methods Produce American Political Ignorance
What’s wrong with our civics education and how to fix it.

Civics courses are supposed to teach how our government works in real life.  Americans' anger at government has been growing for 30 years.  We've seen griping, grumbling, ranting, and raving about government's size and its role in our lives.  False information causes much of the noise.  Civil, healthy debate is valuable, but it's impossible when the participants are uneducated.  

Civics is

the study
of the structure and function
of government,
and the rights and duties
of citizens.

  • It looks at the ways that our governments are organized, how they're supposed to work, and how they really do work.

  • Civics is an essential, but neglected, area of our education. 

  • The government operates by a set of rules.  

  • We have the right and responsibility to participate in our government. 
  • However, we can't participate fully if we don't know those rules.

Public Demonstrations Do Bring Change

We can't make progress without them.

Many Americans think that mass public demonstrations began in the 1960s.  Actually, they’ve been around for hundreds of years, and they’re familiar throughout the world.  Demonstrations are a necessary ingredient for social evolution.  No significant social, economic, or political change has ever happened anywhere in the world without some form of protest or demonstration. 

You Can Stop the Atrocity at America’s Borders
This is how we create terrorists.

Since early this year, our government has been separating young children from their parents at the border, even when the parents attempt to enter the U.S. legally.  The Department of Homeland Security says it has seized at least 2,000 children.  The children are held in cages, tents, military bases, and prisons.  Their parents don’t know where they are and have no way to contact them.
Most Americans are outraged. 

You can help.

Congressional Powers and the Elastic Clause
What does “general welfare” mean?

Our Constitution states that “All legislative power is herein granted to a Congress of the United States which shall be composed of a House of Representatives and a Senate.”  (Article I, Section 1)  ALL legislative power.  Presidents do not make laws.  And Congress can do just about anything it wants to do.​

Political Ignorance Breeds Political Impotence.

These essays do what our schools fail to do.
They teach civics properly.
It's not your boring high school civics class.
Pat uses current events and the U.S. Constitution to explain what's happening, and why.
​With these tools, you can better understand current events, 
be an informed voter, and influence your government officials.
You can help make the world be what you want it to be.

 ​America will work for you

when you know how to make it work.
American politics are in turmoil because most Americans don't understand how their government works.

Those who understand how government 
works know how to influence it. 
Through Community Matters, I use the U.S. Constitution and current events to teach American government – civics.
I don't report the news.  I explain it.

Patricia A. O'Malley
Social Policy & Programs Consulting    ~    Community Matters
P.O. Box 97803    ~    Pittsburgh, PA  15227   ~    412-310-4886    ~    info@patomalley-consulting.com
Copyright Patricia A. O'Malley    ~    All rights reserved
Established 1993

I've been writing Community Matters since 2008.
Here are my most recent articles.

Patricia A. O'Malley

Social Policy & Programs Consulting

Training and Services for agencies working toward social and economic justice