Fact Check: U.S. Public Schools STILL Teach Declaration Of Independence

Fact Check

  • by: Ed Payne
Fact Check: U.S. Public Schools STILL Teach Declaration Of Independence Widely Taught

Does the U.S. public education system no longer teach the Declaration of Independence? No, that's not true: American public schools still teach the Declaration of Independence as a foundational document in American history and government. It is typically included in curriculum materials and is often studied in history, civics and government classes. The Declaration of Independence holds significant importance in understanding the principles and ideals upon which the United States was founded.

The claim appeared in a post and video on Facebook (archived here) published on July 7, 2023, under the title "This young man is on to sumthin." The video's caption says:

This guy is right on point 👇👇👇👇👇 👇👇 Truth Bombs!!! 💥💥💥💥💥💥

This is what the post looked like on Facebook at the time of writing:

Declaration Facebook.png

(Source: Facebook.com screenshot taken on Mon Aug 7 14:30:04 2023 UTC)

The video

The clip above comes from "The Victor Nieves Show" on Real Talk 93.3, which is part of a Missouri-based conservative talk radio network. The original version of the video the excerpt comes from runs just under 44 minutes and was published on Facebook (archived here) on March 25, 2022. Here's the transcript of the 2:20 clip that begins about 28 minutes into the longer video:

Why does the public education system not teach the Declaration of Independence? They'll talk about all kinds of other things, but they will not discuss the American Declaration of Independence. Because the American Declaration of Independence very clearly says that it is the people's duty to overthrow a tyrannical government--the duty of the people to overthrow a tyrannical government. Therein lies the purpose of the Second Amendment. It's not about anything else.

Our Second Amendment is so that we can be well armed in the unlikely event that we ever have to 1776 again. Right, our Founding Fathers had literally just fought a Revolutionary War. They understood the value of the people being well-armed. In fact, little history note: the battles of Lexington and Concord that started the Revolutionary War, those were fought over munitions depots. Lexington and Concord are where the colonists had their guns, and the British understood that if the colonials were well armed, they had a problem on their hands. So, they tried in the middle of the night, they tried to go take their guns. That's where the infamous 'the British are coming, the British are coming' [comes from]. Because they had a system set up, because they feared that the tyrants would come try to take their guns. Well, does that sound a little familiar? Does that sound like something that, I don't know, maybe we worry about today?

I think the reason they don't teach the Declaration of Independence to children is because if they did, it would red pill the crap out of a whole bunch of young people all across the country. Because they would hear, they would read the grievances of our founding fathers. And they would say, 'Well, [unintelligible] wait a minute. These are the exact same grievances that I have today.' Hey, history never changes itself. It's cyclical. It just repeats over and over and over. And we're not that far off from history repeating itself again and I think that's the reason they don't talk about the Declaration of Independence in our schools.

In fact, you know, another reason that they don't discuss the Declaration of Independence in our schools is because the Declaration of Independence directly mentions the name of God Almighty, multiple times. Right? It says that we understand that our rights are given to us by God and not government.

State by state

There's no evidence to support the claim by Nieves that the public education system does not teach about the Declaration of Independence. Lead Stories found information on the laws and education programs for all 50 states and the District of Columbia that shows the assertion to be false. Additionally, the Education Resources Information Center of the U.S. Department of Education lists such details in its annual "The State of State Standards for Civics and U.S. History." Links to our findings for Alabama through Wyoming are listed below:

  1. Alabama
  2. Alaska
  3. Arkansas
  4. Arizona
  5. California
  6. Colorado
  7. Connecticut
  8. Delaware
  9. District of Columbia
  10. Florida
  11. Georgia
  12. Hawaii
  13. Idaho
  14. Illinois
  15. Indiana
  16. Iowa
  17. Kansas
  18. Kentucky
  19. Louisiana
  20. Maine
  21. Maryland
  22. Massachusetts
  23. Michigan
  24. Minnesota
  25. Mississippi
  26. Missouri
  27. Montana
  28. Nebraska
  29. Nevada
  30. New Hampshire
  31. New Jersey
  32. New Mexico
  33. New York
  34. North Carolina
  35. North Dakota
  36. Ohio
  37. Oklahoma
  38. Oregon
  39. Pennsylvania
  40. Rhode Island
  41. South Carolina
  42. South Dakota
  43. Tennessee
  44. Texas
  45. Utah
  46. Vermont
  47. Virginia
  48. Washington
  49. West Virginia
  50. Wisconsin
  51. Wyoming

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  Ed Payne

Ed Payne is a staff writer at Lead Stories. He is an Emmy Award-winning journalist as part of CNN’s coverage of 9/11. Ed worked at CNN for nearly 24 years with the CNN Radio Network and CNN Digital. Most recently, he was a Digital Senior Producer for Gray Television’s Digital Content Center, the company’s digital news hub for 100+ TV stations. Ed also worked as a writer and editor for WebMD. In addition to his journalistic endeavors, Ed is the author of two children’s book series: “The Daily Rounds of a Hound” and “Vail’s Tales.” 

Read more about or contact Ed Payne

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