The best way for the average citizen to learn about the Constitution may not be to hop on a motorcycle and travel cross-country. Aside from the obvious inconveniences that might prevent such a journey—work, family, and, uh, the lack of that all-American image of freedom: the motorcycle—most people might prefer to stick to the textbook interpretation of the Constitution taught in a high school civics class. Yet, what exactly is that interpretation? And in an America so divided between Right and Left, can we even claim there is one correct way to interpret America’s foundational document? What the Constitution says, what it means, and even what it is continues to be a source of confusion as time and even technology put more distance between the present us and the 1787 Constitutional Convention attended by powdered-wigged white men. Thankfully, Peter Sagal was willing to take his bike to the American roadside for us and explore how the Constitution works in the twenty-first century. Leaving behind the textbook and jumping into the airwaves of television, Sagal talks to both experts and regular citizens from coast to coast and brings us a four-part series aired on PBS that gives us a fresh look at the Constitution—and also silences those naysayers that claim TV to be the opposite of educational.
Constitution USA premiered May 7 and wrapped up its final episode yesterday, May 28. All four episodes are available for viewing online at PBS. Check back with us in the coming weeks as we explore the series in more detail.