It's never too late to learn something new or, perhaps, to reinforce that which you had previously learned. In political-activist circles one often hears the label "low-information voter" tossed about with disdain. Usually the term refers to those who choose not to study up on issues and/or candidates and instead rely on recommendations of friends, or worse, people of status (i.e. celebrities).
There is another, more accurate, way to understand the term, however. With technology flooding us with information of all kinds at all times, it is difficult, if not impossible, not to take in information. The problem for us, then, is in the processing of that information. So much — perhaps too much — of our education rests on pouring information into our brains. Schools in large part have virtually abandoned the foundational task of establishing the filters — the core principles — that enable us to evaluate the information constantly coming at us. "Intelligence plus character — that is the goal of true education," affirmed Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
To give substance to that commitment, now is the time to renew your acquaintance with, and understanding of, the two foundational documents of the American system: The Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the United States of America. Hillsdale College, located in Hillsdale, MI, has created a number of free online courses focusing on the history of Western Civilization, the United States, and the Constitution. You can view each of the lectures from five of the courses by following the links below. To gain full benefit of the lectures, however, including supplemental readings from source material, quizzes, and discussion boards, you can register to take the course through the college. Once registered, you will be able to access all of the college's free online courses covering great literary works, economics, and great figures of history.
Introduction to the Constitution is a five-part series consisting of four lectures by Dr. Larry Arnn, president of Hillsdale College, and a Q & A session with nationally-syndicated radio talk-show host Hugh Hewitt.
Constitution 101 – The Meaning & History of the Constitution is a ten-lecture series featuring members of Hillsdale College's faculty from both Politics and History. Each lecture is followed by a Q & A session in which the lecturer answers questions from students and online participants at the time of the original recording of the course.
Constitution 201 – The Progressive Rejection of the Founding & the Rise of Bureaucratic Despotism expands on the seventh and eighth lectures from Constitution 101, focusing on how modern Progressives openly and unashamedly work to destroy the Constitution in the name of equality. Again, each lecture is completed with a Q & A session.
The Federalist Papers explores important themes of the collection of essays that appeared in newspapers between October 1787 and August 1788, authored by Alexander Hamilton, John Jay, and James Madison under the pen-name Publius, defending the new Constitution and urging its ratification by the states. Each lecture is completed with a Q & A session.
The Presidency and the Constitution examines the structure and function of executive power in the U.S. constitutional order. It traces the changes from that envisioned and (imperfectly) practiced by the Founders to what we have in the modern Progressive administrative state. Each lecture is completed with a Q & A session.