How dumb are Americans? A recent story in Newsweek found three out of ten Americans surveyed could not pass the standard US Citizenship test given to immigrants. A survey of 1,000 Americans found:

  • 6% could not circle Independence Day on a calendar
  • 29% could not name the Vice President
  • 38% of Americans failed the citizenship test overall
  • 44% were unable to define the Bill of Rights
  • 73% could not explain why America fought the Cold War
  • 80% could not name the President who oversaw World War II
  • 94% could not name the amount of Amendments found in the Constitution

In addition, a poll conducted in 2009 by the European Journal of Communication found 76% of Finnish people, 75% of British citizens and 68% of Danes could correctly answer questions on international affairs (such as “Could you identify the Taliban?”). Only 58% of Americans answered the same questions correctly. [Newsweek; video clip via HBO’s “Real Time”]

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