Boomerang Blog

Democracy and the First Amendment

The First Amendment is the very foundation of a free American society.   Religious liberty, for starters.   Government in America may not interfere with religious practices, and no religious denomination may usurp legislative powers to impose theocracy. The famous phrase, “wall of separation between church and state,” was first used by Thomas Jefferson in 1802.   The founders were….Read more

Ninth Amendment: Stretch Marks on the Bill of Rights

The Ninth Amendment is one of the most controversial of the amendments because it’s another of those inkblot tests. The Bill of Rights itself almost didn’t make it.   Alexander Hamilton calls a bill of rights dangerous   While drafting the Constitution, Hamilton claimed that a citizens’ bill of rights was not only irrelevant but even dangerous. He opposed including….Read more

Do Off-Duty Teachers Surrender Their First Amendment Rights?

      Natalie Munroe was an English teacher in a northeastern Pennsylvania high school.   She was in good standing until district parents came across her blog online. Munroe had some very unflattering things to say about some of her her students. “A disgusting brood of insolent, unappreciative, selfish brats,” was one of the more gracious things she called….Read more

Puerto Rican Statehood? It May Be Getting Closer

Since the devastation of Hurricanes Maria and Irma, Puerto Rico’s quest for statehood seems even more urgent. Several Republicans, as well as Democrats, in Congress support the move.   Puerto Rico has copied Tennessee (in 1796) by sending a delegation of “senators and representatives” to Congress to agitate for statehood.   Tennessee succeeded. Other states used unorthodox means, such as….Read more

VIDEO: Grading Class Participation Made Easy

Most schools require their teachers to put grades to every student’s “class participation.” But you are dealing with diverse students in challenging classes and curriculum. You strive to bring out the best in them and to initiate their growth. Complicated by it being a different process for every student. You can find ways to encourage them to get involved. The….Read more

Is the Third Amendment Even Needed, Anymore?

Most Americans don’t worry about having to feed and house government soldiers, so it doesn’t seem that the Third Amendment is significant to present-day society. Some observers say that it’s obsolete and no longer needed in the Bill of Rights.   It reads:   No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of….Read more

Chief of Staff: The Abominable “No” Man

Jimmy Carter, the 39th president, had many admirable qualities. Despite being a highly educated, wealthy and supremely intelligent man, he was a man of great humility.   President Carter took office in 1977 determined to change the formality of the presidency. He told bands not to play “Hail to the Chief.” He wore sweaters on TV to encourage Americans to….Read more

What Happens When the 6th Amendment Is Ignored?

    It’s the stuff of cop shows: When someone is arrested the police say,  “if you cannot afford a lawyer, one will be provided for you.” Everyone knows these lines, but did you know the Miranda rights started with the Sixth Amendment?   Article III, section 2 of the Constitution says that all trials in America shall be by jury.  The Sixth….Read more

4 Ways To Avoid Another Vietnam

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After the second chemical attack on his own people by Syria’s Assad, the Trump administration, along with France and England, launched cruise missiles. The stated goal was to cripple Assad’s chemical programs, a valid reason for action.   This targeted attack came after one in 2017 by just the United States. Unfortunately it didn’t deter Assad from doing it again.….Read more

What You Need to Know About the 10th Amendment

  What powers and freedoms do states have?  States’ rights is tricky. The powerful in Washington want national authority to carry out their agenda, while those out of power invoke states’ rights. These positions are then reversed when one party loses office.   Generally, America’s political leaders put one principle first: the Vince Lombardi Principle. Do whatever you must so that….Read more