It’s an awkward scene. John Goodman has a lousy role (and I’m not fond of the direction for him or Melanie Griffith here). I’ve never seen the movie, “Born Yesterday,” and I don’t know the context.
But ten important amendments to the Constitution, to the tune of “The Twelve Days of Christmas,” a potentially useful mnemonic device for your U.S. history, and government students; it’s mostly accurate:
There is some skipping around — the song covers the First, Second, Fourth, Fifth, and Sixth Amendments, then skips to the Thirteenth, Fifteenth, Sixteenth, Eighteenth, and Nineteenth Amendments. The First Amendment’s five freedoms are covered completely, other amendments not so much.
The actor in the scene, playing the senator who sings the Fifteenth Amendment, is former Tennessee U.S. Sen. Fred Thompson. Thompson staffed the Watergate Committee chaired by Sen. Sam Ervin of North Carolina, earlier — wouldn’t it be interesting to hear his views on this scene, and song, and what other tricks he may have encountered in the Senate, from Sen. Ervin, or the late Sen. Robert C. Byrd?
It’s not Schoolhouse Rock, but it’s really very good. Everything covered in the song is in Texas TEKS, but some things skipped, like the Fourteenth Amendment, are also required. Can you use it in your classes?
And by the way, does anyone know a rap for the Bill of Rights?
Tip of the old scrub brush to the Facebook status of the Bill of Rights Institute.