Saturday, May 8, 2010

Do I Have a Right?

I haven't been playing many computer games at ALL lately -- online chess doesn't count, that being more of a human-on-human game. A few weeks ago, though, Niece #3 introduced be to an educational game called "Do I Have a Right?" and I went on a brief but thoroughly enjoyable spree with it.

The game is designed to teach familiarity with the specific rights conferred by the (U.S.) Constitution. As the game progresses, you hire attorneys who specialize in various protections (e.g. freedom of speech, right to a speedy trial, etc.)

Then the clients start arriving, and you scamper about trying to decide if they have a valid case, and whether you have a lawyer in your stable that can help them out.

The cases don't tend to be the most subtle -- Niece #3 is an 8th grader -- and because the game aims for complete coverage of the Constitutional rights, there is a hilarious abundance of cases involving both 21st Century attempts at slavery and the billeting of troops. But, the game is very cute, it's fun, it has a surprisingly engaging gameplay for an educational tool, and it will give you a brisk refresher course on your basic Constitutional law. You don't often see an educational game that works both as education and as a game. The designers of "Do I Have a Right?" nailed it.


Elaine said...

Following my Epic Fail on the last Wednesday Quiz, perhaps I should take this up. Believe it or not, I scored a high A in Poli Sci in college. Of course, that was Freshman Year--1965. Where have all the decades gone?

Jennifer said...

Oh, sure, an educational game like this seems all good and innocent, but if you let kids think they've got rights, there's chaos. CHAOS, I TELL YOU!

For instance, I was going to clip my 9-year-old's toenails, and after one day's exposure to the game, he objected on several counts (citing the amendments by number):

1) Clipping toenails is cruel and unusual punishment (8th).

2) He has a right to normal weapons (2nd; he fake-attacked me in self-defense with a stuffed penguin; the lawyer in our house objected on my behalf that a stuffed penguin might not represent a "normal weapon").

3) I was enslaving his toes (13th).

4) By taking his toenails, I was subjecting him to unreasonable search and seizure (4th).

5) I was abridging his 1st amendment rights to expression.

See what you've done now?

Michael5000 said...

@Jennifer: I see what I've done. Given you a forum in which to subtly brag about the Boy. But it is right and proper you do so.