28th Amendment Petition Released by We the People Folk Group Proffers 9 Constitutional Changes to Test Popular Amendment by the Populace

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With a goal of more than 84.5 million online signatures, this folk music group intends to test the third way of modifying the US Constitution — by Popular Amendment.

We The People Folk Group, Nashville, TN

People were telling us over and over again, fundamental changes need to be made and those in office will not do it.

A 28th Amendment Petition was released on Presidents’ Day February 21st, 2011. It was published as an online petition at http://www.gopetition.com/petitions/28th.html and simultaneously released as a spoken musical performance by We the People Folk Group at http://www.youtube.com/wethepeoplefolkgroup.

“Something like this needs to be done” said Rick Durrett, keyboardist of the group based in Nashville, TN. Rick joined the group along with six veteran entertainers in 2010 to bring back the sounds, joy, excitement and activism of American Folk Music from the 1960’s era. While developing a new repertoire of songs pertinent to the current times, “people were telling us over and over again, fundamental changes need to be made and those in office will not do it,” according to the group’s producer, Jim Corrigan.

The group faced a dilemma: a constitutional amendment by 2/3rds of both Houses or 3/4ths of State Legislatures would never be approved given the fundamental changes included in this 28th Amendment Petition. For instance, the sections “No person seeking election to public office shall accept monetary gifts from any organization of any kind” and “Senators and Representatives shall not engage in fund-raising activities of any kind,” are not revisions those holding public office would endorse.

The solution is an amendment by Popular Amendment. Although this method previously has not been tried in the USA, the legal status of online petitions is evolving. “Scotland, Queensland (Australia), and Number 10 (UK) all accept Internet petitions,” according to http://www.gopetition.com, the site where this 28th Amendment is hosted. This petition may become the first critical test of this fundamental right.

“Americans are introspectively watching suppressed people in the Middle East and Africa demand their fundamental rights, and this leads them to wonder about their own rights in their own country,” the group’s producer said. This 28th Amendment calls for a modernization of voting rights with a turn-of-the-century concept, “open-source voting,” along with eight other changes to the Constitution.

Additional information is available on the group’s website http://www.wethepeoplefolkgroup.com.

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Shirley Brunton
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