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Constitution Day

Thursday, September 17th, is Constitution Day 2020, the day celebrating the U.S. Constitutional Convention and the signing of the American Constitution more than 200 years ago in 1787. With this history in mind, the United States Congress has established Constitution Day as a special day every year to call attention to the adoption of the Constitution and those who have become U.S. citizens.

In recognition of Constitution Day, the College encourages you to participate in the following activities to help engage you in the political process, today and over the next several weeks:

Thursday, September 17, 2020

All Day

  • Online Constitution Games
    Check out these fun and engaging online games. Challenge your friends to make it more fun.
  • Constitution Day Challenge
    Celebrate Constitution Day by completing the Constitution Crossword Puzzle. Post your completed crossword puzzle on Instagram and tag #ForestersEverywhere to show off your good work.
  • Club and Organization Constitution Review
    We encourage all clubs and organizations to review their constitutions today. Student leaders can submit their constitutions to the Gates Center to have it reviewed. Any club or organization that submits their constitution today will receive feedback by Friday, September 25. Submit your constitutions to gatescenter@lakeforest.edu.
  • Educational Videos
    The National Constitution Center has created these free and fun educational videos that feature the museum's education staff, distinguished scholars, and even some famous faces who bring America’s democracy and the stories of “We the People” to life.
  • National Constitution Center Virtual Tours
    The National Constitution Center has created a virtual museum experience for 2020. Here, you can view exhibits at the National Constitution Center. From the constitutional conflicts of the Civil War to the vision and ambition of Alexander Hamilton, there’s plenty to learn right from your own seat.
  • Interactive Constitution
    Through this interactive experience, you will learn about the text, history, and meaning of the U.S. Constitution from leading scholars of diverse legal and philosophical perspectives.

11 a.m. CST - Constitution Day: Virtual Student Town Hall with Justice Neil M. Gorsuch
Join the National Constitution Center’s in a special Student Town Hall with U.S. Supreme Associate Justice Neil M. Gorsuch. Justice Gorsuch will speak about his career, the role of the judicial branch, and what it’s like to sit on the Supreme Court. National Constitution Center President and CEO Jeffrey Rosen will moderate the discussion. Register here.

5:30 p.m. CST - 32nd Annual Liberty Medal Award Ceremony
The National Constitution Center will award its 32nd annual Liberty Medal to Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Associate Justice of the Supreme Court, for her efforts to advance liberty and equality for all. The program, featuring performances by internationally renowned singers and tributes from special friends of Justice Ginsburg.

Friday, September 18, 2020

Noon CST - Scholar Exchange: Constitution 101: The Constitutional Convention
This Scholarly Exchange takes a closer look at the events that led to the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia in the summer of 1787, including the weakness of the Articles of Confederation, Shay’s Rebellion, and the growing need for a new national government. Joining Jeffrey Rosen, president and CEO of the National Constitution Center, is Alexis Coe, historian and author, to examine how America remembers our first president. Coe, only the third woman to write a complete Washington biography, reexamines some of the common and unfamiliar stories of our first president, as described in her new book, a New York Times bestseller, You Never Forget Your First: A Biography of George Washington. Register here.

Thursday, September 24, 2020

6 p.m. CST - Lynne Cheney: Four Presidents and the Creation of the American Nation
Join bestselling historian Lynne Cheney in a conversation about her new book, The Virginia Dynasty, a vivid account focusing on the first four Virginia presidents—George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and James Monroe. Cheney explores how these friends and rivals led in securing independence, hammering out the U.S. Constitution, and building a working republic. Jeffrey Rosen, president and CEO of the National Constitution Center, moderates. Register here.

Friday, September 25, 2020

Noon CST - Scholar Exchange: Constitutional Ratification Debates
In this session, attendees will explore the battle over the ratification of the Constitution—beginning with Convention delegates who refused to sign the Constitution and continuing through the debates between the Federalists and Anti-Federalists and the crafting of the Federalist Papers. Register here.

Thursday, October 1, 2020

5:30 p.m. CST - The Constitution Drafting Project: Libertarian and Progressive Constitutions
Join the National Constitution Center for the launch of our Constitution Drafting Project. The project brings together three teams of leading constitutional scholars—team libertarian, team progressive, and team conservative—to draft and present their ideal constitutions. To celebrate the publication of the libertarian and progressive constitutions, join the contributors as they present and discuss their constitutions. Jeffrey Rosen, president and CEO of the National Constitution Center, moderates. Register here.

Friday, October 2, 2020

Noon CST - Scholar Exchange: Federalism
In this session, attendees will explore Federalism and the debate over how to balance the powers of the national government, the powers of the states, and the rights of individuals. The session will examine the debates over Federalism at the Constitutional Convention, how it works, how it has changed over time, how the Supreme Court has addressed it, and how it affects us today. Register here.

Thursday, October 8, 2020

11 a.m. CST - The President and Immigration Law
The biggest immigration controversies of the last decade have all involved policies produced by the president, such as President Obama's decision to protect Dreamers from deportation and President Trump's proclamation banning immigrants from several majority-Muslim nations. But should the president be America’s immigration policymaker-in-chief? Michael McConnell of Stanford Law School joins Adam Cox and Cristina Rodríguez, authors of The President and Immigration Law, for a deep dive into the history of American immigration policy and debate about who should control immigration policy today. Jeffrey Rosen, president and CEO of the National Constitution Center, moderates. Register here.

Thursday, October 15, 2020

6 p.m. CST - How America Came Together a Century Ago and How We Can Do It Again
Eminent political scientist Robert Putnam discusses his book, The Upswing, with co-author Shaylyn Romney Garrett, exploring the economic, social, and political trends over the past century that brought us from an “I” society to a “We” society and then back again. Putnam and Romney will also discuss how we can learn from that experience to become a stronger, more unified nation. Jeffrey Rosen, president and CEO of the National Constitution Center, moderates. Register here.

Voter Registration

Election Day in the United States is two months away. Have you registered to vote? To be eligible to vote you must be a U.S. citizen, aged 18 by the day of the election, and officially registered to vote with the clerk of your home state or county. Here is a site where you can go to get information on where and how U.S. citizens can register to vote in your home state. If you are uncertain about either your registration status or current registration address, you can easily verify this information by going to this site.

If you need help navigating the voter registration and verification processes, or if you need help changing your voting address or with some other registration or voting matter, feel free to reach out to Jim Marquardt, Associate Professor of Politics or Carol Gayle, Associate Professor of History, who are both deputy voter registrars.

Everyone is encouraged to check out additional resources on the Constitution Center’s website to find out which founder you are most like, view Constitution Hall Pass videos, and take additional quizzes and learn other fun facts about the Constitution.