Let’s see how the new citizenship test looks

The Trump administration has made some slight changes to the citizenship test administered as part of the naturalization process. In the original test, there are 100 possible questions and you, hopeful immigrant friend, would be asked 10. Once you answer six correctly, you’re in. But in the new test, there are 128 possible questions and you will be asked twenty. You need to answer twelve correct, but you will be asked all twenty no matter what.

Did we go through the whole test question by question to make snarky comments?



A: Principles of American Government
1. What is the form of government of the United States?

  • Republic
  • Constitution-based federal republic
  • Representative democracy

Any of these work for me; federal democratic republic is the answer I like the best and that’s kind of encapsulated here.

2. What is the supreme law of the land?*

  • (U.S.) Constitution

Dear Republicans: I know this is complicated, but the Constitution and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; and all Treaties made are the “supreme law of the land.”


3. Name one thing the U.S. Constitution does.

  • Forms the government
  • Defines powers of government
  • Defines the parts of government
  • Protects the rights of the people

These are all good answers; even if the Constitution is flawed these are the things it does or tries to do.

4. The U.S. Constitution starts with the words “We the People.” What does “We the People” mean?

  • Self-government
  • Popular sovereignty
  • Consent of the governed
  • People should govern themselves
  • (Example of) social contract

This is almost a higher-than-expected level question; the plain reading is that it means the writers of the U.S. Constitution are representatives of the people, which was only sort of true. Besides being, you know, an all White all male group, they weren’t elected but were picked by state governments. Still: yes, “We the People” implies the necessity of self-government or a social contract.

5. How are changes made to the U.S. Constitution?

  • Amendments
  • The amendment process

Amendments are the changes; the process is how they are made. But thank you for letting the answer just be “amendments” and moving on with life. And also for not having to explain the process which is insanely complicated.

6. What does the Bill of Rights protect?

  • (The basic) rights of Americans
  • (The basic) rights of people living in the United States

Oh, fun fact, the Bill of Rights applies to non-Americans. Even the late Justice Antonin Scalia said so. The Bill of Rights applies to you, not-yet-naturalized immigrant. I promise.

7. How many amendments does the U.S. Constitution have?*

  • Twenty-seven (27)

Put me in a room with 27 Americans and we will have 27 answers to this and I’m not sure even one of them would be “27.”


8. Why is the Declaration of Independence important?

  • It says America is free from British control.
  • It says all people are created equal.
  • It identifies inherent rights.
  • It identifies individual freedoms.

I would also accept “it slaps.”

9. What founding document said the American colonies were free from Britain?

  • Declaration of Independence

If your test administrator just asks these three questions in a row you got very lucky.

10. Name two important ideas from the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution.

  • Equality
  • Liberty
  • Social contract
  • Natural rights
  • Limited government
  • Self-government

The right of revolution should be here, too. Or is that not something we want to talk about?

11. The words “Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness” are in what founding document?

  • Declaration of Independence

“declaration of independence constitution” is a very popular Google search

12. What is the economic system of the United States?*

  • Capitalism
  • Free market economy

I have a lot of thoughts about this question.


13. What is the rule of law?

  • Everyone must follow the law.
  • Leaders must obey the law.
  • Government must obey the law.
  • No one is above the law.

Well… okay. The rule of law is that “all members of a society (including those in government) are considered equally subject to publicly disclosed legal codes and processes.” To simplify it to ‘government must obey the law’ rather than ‘members of government must obey the law’ feels odd to me in a way I cannot explain.

14. Many documents influenced the U.S. Constitution. Name one.

  • Declaration of Independence
  • Articles of Confederation
  • Federalist Papers
  • Anti-Federalist Papers
  • Virginia Declaration of Rights
  • Fundamental Orders of Connecticut
  • Mayflower Compact
  • Iroquois Great Law of Peace

Well, the Federalist Papers were arguments in favor of adopting the Constitution, but didn’t have a ton of impact on the already-written document. The Anti-Federalist Papers did influence the Constitution by encouraging the adoption of the Bill of Rights. I would suggest the Magna Carta and the English Bill of Rights as pretty substantial influences. The Constitution of Medina is probably also influential but American history pretends that Islam was invented on September 11, 2001.

15. There are three branches of government. Why?

  • So one part does not become too powerful
  • Checks and balances
  • Separation of powers

Because it was convenient for John Marshall, who completely made it up in 1803.

B: System of Government

16. Name the three branches of government.

  • Legislative, executive, and judicial
  • Congress, president, and the courts

Twitter, Facebook, YouTube.


17. The President of the United States is in charge of which branch of government?

  • Executive branch


18. What part of the federal government writes laws?

  • (U.S.) Congress
  • (U.S. or national) legislature
  • Legislative branch


19. What are the two parts of the U.S. Congress?

  • Senate and House (of Representatives)

Both Sen.-elect Tommy Tuberville and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez have incorrectly referred to the House and Senate as separate branches of government, likely because they – along the the presidency – are the three elected components of the federal government.

20. Name one power of the U.S. Congress.*

  • Writes laws
  • Declares war
  • Makes the federal budget

It can also send mail for free. If I was administering this test and you said “franking” as a power of Congress I would absolutely accept that.

21. How many U.S. senators are there?

  • One hundred (100)

Give or take. Sometimes one dies or goes to jail.

22. How long is a term for a U.S. senator?

  • Six (6) years 

This is something a lot of Americans don’t know. Senate terms are longer than any other elected office in the U.S. and by quite a bit.

23. Who is one of your state’s U.S. senators now?

  • Answers will vary. [District of Columbia residents and residents of U.S. territories should answer that D.C. (or the territory where the applicant lives) has no U.S. senators.]

A 2016 poll found that less than half of Americans know that states have two senators, so go ahead and name them both for me, Americans. I’m listening. P.S.: Paul Strauss and Michael Brown are the senators for D.C., which would really like statehood please.

24. How many voting members are in the House of Representatives?

  • Four hundred thirty-five (435)

The “voting” part is important, as there are a number of nonvoting delegates.


25. How long is a term for a member of the House of Representatives?

  • Two (2) years 

Very short.

26. Why do U.S. representatives serve shorter terms than U.S. senators?

  • To more closely follow public opinion

This is true but how many Americans know this?

27. How many senators does each state have?

  • Two (2)

See my comment on question 23.

28. Why does each state have two senators?

  • Equal representation (for small states)
  • The Great Compromise (Connecticut Compromise)

Yeah, I – you know, I read this and was trying to think “yeah but why did they pick two as a number?” and I still don’t have an answer for that.

29. Name your U.S. representative. 

  • Answers will vary. [Residents of territories with nonvoting Delegates or Resident Commissioners may provide the name of that Delegate or Commissioner. Also acceptable is any statement that the territory has no (voting) representatives in Congress.]

Yeah. Name your U.S. representative. Statistically speaking, you can’t.

30. What is the name of the Speaker of the House of Representatives now?* 

It’s Nancy Pelosi. You can say that, USCIS. It’s okay.

31. Who does a U.S. senator represent?

  • Citizens of their state

Well. Uh. I mean. Historically,

32. Who elects U.S. senators?

  • Citizens from their state

Citizens over the age of 18 who haven’t been disenfranchised, anyway.

33. Who does a member of the House of Representatives represent?

  • Citizens in their (congressional) district
  • Citizens in their district

People who live on this side of the street but not that side because that side is in a different district. Our district is shaped kind of like a salamander because it’s better for Governor Gerry – a kind of Gerry-mander, if you will.

34. Who elects members of the House of Representatives? 

  • Citizens from their (congressional) district

Your state legislature redraws district boundaries every ten years and elects the members then. The rest is just a formality.

35. Some states have more representatives than other states. Why?

  • (Because of) the state’s population
  • (Because) they have more people
  • (Because) some states have more people

They have more people, although it doesn’t necessarily scale the way you think it does

36. The President of the United States is elected for how many years?* 

  • Four (4) years

I hate the way this is worded but fine.

37. The President of the United States can serve only two terms. Why?

  • (Because of) the 22nd Amendment
  • To keep the president from becoming too powerful

So obviously (b) is what inspired (a) but I really like (b) better because it’s far more honest.

38. What is the name of the President of the United States now?*

You can’t be bothered to update this study guide every 4-8 years?

39. What is the name of the Vice President of the United States now?* 

Okay actually this is a good question because – you guessed it – Americans are bad at this, too.

40. If the president can no longer serve, who becomes president? 

  • The Vice President (of the United States)

If there is one. It might be John Goodman.

41. Name one power of the president.  

  • Signs bills into law                                                
  • Vetoes bills                                                          
  • Enforces laws
  • Commander in Chief (of the military)
  • Chief diplomat

“Chief diplomat” is more a job than a power, but sure.

42. Who is Commander in Chief of the U.S. military?

  • The President (of the United States)

(of the United States)

43. Who signs bills to become laws?

  • The President (of the United States)

You mean the President of The Walt Disney Company can’t sign bills into law?

44. Who vetoes bills?*

  • The President (of the United States)

He especially vetoes bills that would limit his power.


45. Who appoints federal judges? 

  • The President (of the United States)

I would wager this would actually go on the list of things average Americans don’t know.

46. The executive branch has many parts. Name one.

  • President (of the United States)
  • Cabinet
  • Federal departments and agencies

I hope that if you name specific department or agency you would get credit for this. Or the vice president. Remember him? He was just a couple questions ago.

47. What does the President’s Cabinet do?

  • Advises the President (of the United States)

The Cabinet comprises the president’s advisors which is not quite the same as saying they advise him; in reality, they are the people responsible for implementing the president’s policies.

48. What are two Cabinet-level positions?

  • Attorney General
  • Secretary of Agriculture
  • Secretary of Commerce
  • Secretary of Defense
  • Secretary of Education                        
  • Secretary of Energy                                                              
  • Secretary of Health and Human Services
  • Secretary of Homeland Security
  • Secretary of Housing and Urban Development
  • Secretary of the Interior
  • Secretary of Labor
  • Secretary of State 
  • Secretary of Transportation
  • Secretary of the Treasury
  • Secretary of Veterans Affairs
  • Vice President (of the United States)

There are some other jobs here, too, like White House Chief of Staff, that are considered “cabinet-level.”

49. Why is the Electoral College important?

  • It decides who is elected president.
  • It provides a compromise between the popular election of the president and congressional selection.

It does both of these things. Important doesn’t mean good.

50. What is one part of the judicial branch?

  • Supreme Court
  • Federal Courts

The Supreme Court questions are borrrrrring.

51. What does the judicial branch do? 

  • Reviews laws
  • Explains laws
  • Resolves disputes (disagreements) about the law
  • Decides if a law goes against the (U.S.) Constitution 

52. What is the highest court in the United States?* 

  • Supreme Court

The basketball court above the Supreme Court.

53. How many seats are on the Supreme Court?

  • Nine (9) 

“Visit uscis.gov/citizenship/testupdates for the number of Supreme Court justices.”

54. How many Supreme Court justices are usually needed to decide a case?

  • Five (5)

Sometimes less, though. “Usually” is a good way to put it.

55. How long do Supreme Court justices serve?

  • (For) life
  • Lifetime appointment
  • (Until) retirement

Too long


56. Supreme Court justices serve for life. Why?

  • To be independent (of politics)
  • To limit outside (political) influence

These are true but – and this isn’t about the test I’m just ranting now – these aren’t the only ways to do this. A fixed-length term would also keep them independent of politics.

57. Who is the Chief Justice of the United States now? 

It’s been John Roberts for so long, it’s weird the things this test treats are permanent and the things it treats as transient.

58. Name one power that is only for the federal government.

  • Print paper money
  • Mint coins 
  • Declare war
  • Create an army
  • Make treaties
  • Set foreign policy

Weird fact: the “make treaties” thing is kind of a formality. States have treaties with foreign countries all the time but they call them “agreements” and Congress gets final say over them. Also the power to create an army is reserved to the federal government except for all the state armies that are allowed to exist. It’s complicated.

59. Name one power that is only for the states.

  • Provide schooling and education
  • Provide protection (police)
  • Provide safety (fire departments)
  • Give a driver’s license
  • Approve zoning and land use

I mean the Tenth Amendment makes this sort of hard; basically anything not specifically given to Congress is reserved for the states but also Congress has the power to make any law that is “necessary and proper.” I’m not sure this question is really useful.

60. What is the purpose of the 10th Amendment?

  • (It states that the) powers not given to the federal government belong to the states or to the people.

Sometimes you see Tenth Amendment fanatics in the wild. Enthusiastic.


61. Who is the governor of your state now?* 

  • Answers will vary. [District of Columbia residents should answer that D.C. does not have a governor.]

Can D.C. residents answer that their mayor is sort of like a governor? Or at least can one-third of them answer that?

62. What is the capital of your state?

  • Answers will vary. [District of Columbia residents should answer that D.C. is not a state and does not have a capital. Residents of U.S. territories should name the capital of the territory.]

D.C. used to divided into a couple different cities, though.

C: Rights and Responsibilities

63. There are four amendments to the U.S. Constitution about who can vote. Describe one of them. 

  • Citizens eighteen (18) and older (can vote).
  • You don’t have to pay (a poll tax) to vote.
  • Any citizen can vote. (Women and men can vote.)
  • A male citizen of any race (can vote).

Bonus points if you can name the amendment and when it was – actually don’t say out loud when it was passed they’re kind of embarrassing.

64. Who can vote in federal elections, run for federal office, and serve on a jury in the United States?

  • Citizens
  • Citizens of the United States
  • U.S. citizens

… who are at least 18 years old (older for most federal offices) and then a whole bunch of restrictions on felons apply.

65. What are three rights of everyone living in the United States? 

  • Freedom of expression
  • Freedom of speech
  • Freedom of assembly
  • Freedom to petition the government
  • Freedom of religion
  • The right to bear arms

Hey, fun fact: no. In many places convicted domestic abusers can’t have firearms, some religions have more freedom than other religions, and you can’t assemble if it inconveniences Brad who needs to get his truck to the Tractor Supply right now.

66. What do we show loyalty to when we say the Pledge of Allegiance?* 

  • The United States 
  • The flag

The flag, and the to the country, for which it stands, one nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty, and justice, for all. Today’s hot lunch is sloppy joes. The alternate hot lunch is peanut butter sandwiches. Tryouts for the football team will be on the field right after school today, please bring your own football.

67. Name two promises that new citizens make in the Oath of Allegiance. 

  • Give up loyalty to other countries
  • Defend the (U.S.) Constitution
  • Obey the laws of the United States 
  • Serve in the military (if needed)
  • Serve (help, do important work for) the nation (if needed)
  • Be loyal to the United States

If you’re a natural born citizen you are expected to do these things, too, but you make the oath by being born.

68. How can people become United States citizens?

  • Naturalize
  • Derive citizenship
  • Be born in the United States

It is odd that it works this way. I think it should, to be clear. But imagine if you could get a job at Staples by eithering (a) applying and getting hired, (b) working in a store that became a Staples, or (c) being born in the copy & print center. Although if you are born in a Waffle House you do now own the Waffle House, I think.

69. What are two examples of civic participation in the United States?

  • Vote                                                                             
  • Run for office
  • Join a political party
  • Help with a campaign
  • Join a civic group
  • Join a community group
  • Give an elected official your opinion (on an issue)
  • Contact elected officials
  • Support or oppose an issue or policy
  • Write to a newspaper

“I occasionally tweet racist and sexist threats at women of color who serve in Congress.” “Oh, yeah, you contact elected officials and give them your opinion on an issue, that’s two examples.”

70. What is one way Americans can serve their country?

  • Vote                                                                                                 
  • Pay taxes                                                                
  • Obey the law                                                          
  • Serve in the military
  • Run for office
  • Work for local, state, or federal government

Teach in a public school, volunteer in a health clinic, work in a sanitation department, drive the subway, invent a new Taco Bell menu item, etc.

71. Why is it important to pay federal taxes?

  • Required by law
  • All people pay to fund the federal government
  • Required by the (U.S.) Constitution (16th Amendment)
  • Civic duty


72. It is important for all men age 18 through 25 to register for the Selective Service. Name one reason why.

  • Required by law
  • Civic duty
  • Makes the draft fair, if needed

“Makes the draft fair?” I mean, yes, requiring universal participation in the draft is how you make it fair, but is an answer to this not “sometimes we have drafts because of the wars we like to get into all the time?”


A: Colonial Period and Independence

73. The colonists came to America for many reasons. Name one.

  • Freedom
  • Political liberty
  • Religious freedom
  • Economic opportunity
  • Escape persecution

“Economic opportunity” is the number one answer on the board.

74. Who lived in America before the Europeans arrived?*

  • American Indians
  • Native Americans

1/128th of the questions are about American Indians but that’s 1/128th more than I expected.

75. What group of people was taken and sold as slaves?

  • Africans
  • People from Africa

tHe IrIsH

76. What war did the Americans fight to win independence from Britain?

  • American Revolution
  • The (American) Revolutionary War
  • War for (American) Independence

British people have a really hard time answering this question.

77. Name one reason why the Americans declared independence from Britain.

  • High taxes 
  • Taxation without representation
  • British soldiers stayed in Americans’ houses (boarding, quartering)
  • They did not have self-government
  • Boston Massacre
  • Boston Tea Party (Tea Act)
  • Stamp Act
  • Sugar Act
  • Townshend Acts
  • Intolerable (Coercive) Acts

They wanted to do crime. That was a really important factor.

78. Who wrote the Declaration of Independence?*

  • (Thomas) Jefferson

John AdamsBenjamin FranklinThomas JeffersonRoger Sherman, and Robert Livingston.

79. When was the Declaration of Independence adopted?

  • July 4, 1776

July 2, 1776.

80. The American Revolution had many important events. Name one.

  • (Battle of) Bunker Hill
  • Declaration of Independence 
  • Washington Crossing the Delaware (Battle of Trenton)
  • (Battle of) Saratoga
  • Valley Forge (Encampment)
  • (Battle of) Yorktown (British surrender at Yorktown)

These are all good answersfor the war. But the Boston Tea Party, the Boston Massacre, etc. should also be here.

81. There were 13 original states. Name five.

  • New Hampshire
  • Massachusetts
  • Rhode Island
  • Connecticut
  • New York
  • New Jersey
  • Pennsylvania
  • Delaware
  • Maryland
  • Virginia
  • North Carolina
  • South Carolina
  • Georgia

It used to be name one. Now it’s name five.


82. What founding document was written in 1787?

  • (U.S.) Constitution

This is a hard question for me and I know the answer. Oof.

83. The Federalist Papers supported the passage of the U.S. Constitution. Name one of the writers.

  • (James) Madison
  • (Alexander) Hamilton
  • (John) Jay
  • Publius

“Publius” was the pen-name they used. Hamilton wrote most of them.

84. Why were the Federalist Papers important?

  • They helped people understand the (U.S.) Constitution.
  • They supported passing the (U.S.) Constitution.

They probably didn’t help people understand the Constitution but they did lead to its passage. Have you read the Federalist Papers? They’re hard to understand.

85. Benjamin Franklin is famous for many things. Name one

  • Founded the first free public libraries
  • First Postmaster General of the United States
  • Helped write the Declaration of Independence
  • Inventor
  • U.S. diplomat

“Extremely disappointed that man-slut and flying kites in thunderstorms are not also correct answers,” writes a friend on Facebook. This is correct.

86. George Washington is famous for many things. Name one.* 

  • “Father of Our Country” 
  • First president of the United States                                   
  • General of the Continental Army
  • President of the Constitutional Convention

Cherry tree? We learned all about the cherry tree thing in elementary school. It never happened but we learned about it.

87. Thomas Jefferson is famous for many things. Name one.

  • Writer of the Declaration of Independence                   
  • Third president of the United States
  • Doubled the size of the United States (Louisiana Purchase)                                   
  • First Secretary of State
  • Founded the University of Virginia
  • Writer of the Virginia Statute on Religious Freedom

Sally Hemmings. Is that not a correct answer?

88. James Madison is famous for many things. Name one

  • “Father of the Constitution”                     
  • Fourth president of the United States
  • President during the War of 1812
  • One of the writers of the Federalist Papers

Madison didn’t fight in the Revolutionary War because he was consistently in poor health; instead he became a prominent legal scholar. Often called the “Father of the Constitution”, he and Jefferson were opposed to judicial review and insisted they did not intend for there to be three branches of government. Instead, they supported the right of states to declare laws unconstitutional, a system that worked great.

89. Alexander Hamilton is famous for many things. Name one.

  • First Secretary of the Treasury
  • One of the writers of the Federalist Papers
  • Helped establish the First Bank of the United States
  • Aide to General George Washington
  • Member of the Continental Congress

Probably “had a musical about him” or at least “got shot by Aaron Burr” should be on here. Spoilers for Hamilton: An American Musical, by the way.

B: 1800s

90. What territory did the United States buy from France in 1803?

  • Louisiana Territory                           
  • Louisiana

Yes. Boring.

91. Name one war fought by the United States in the 1800s. 

  • War of 1812 
  • Mexican-American War 
  • Civil War 
  • Spanish-American War

I would also accept: First Barbary War, Tecumseh’s War, Creek War, Second Barbary War, First Seminole War, Texas-Indian Wars, Arikara War, Winnebago War, Black Hawk War, Second Seminole War, Cayuse War, Apache Wars, Bleeding Kansas, Puget Sound War, Rogue River Wars, Third Seminole War, Yakima War, Second Opium War, Utah War, Navajo Wars, Raid on Harpers Ferry, First Cortina War, Second Cortina War Paiute War, Yavapai Wars, Dakota War (1862), Colorado War, Shimonoseki War, Snake War, Powder River War, Red Cloud’s War, Comanche Campaign, Modoc War, Red River War, Las Cuevas War, Great Sioux War, Buffalo Hunters’ War, Nez Perce War, Bannock War, Cheyenne War, Sheepeater Indian War, Victorio’s War, White River War, Pine Ridge Campaign, Garza Revolution, Yaqui Wars, Second Samoan Civil War, Philippine-American War, Moro Rebellion, and the Boxer Rebellion

92. Name the U.S. war between the North and the South.

  • The Civil War

I really like the implication that “War of Northern Aggression” is not an acceptable answer. Because it isn’t.

93. The Civil War had many important events. Name one

  • (Battle of) Fort Sumter 
  • Emancipation Proclamation
  • (Battle of) Vicksburg
  • (Battle of) Gettysburg 
  • Sherman’s March
  • (Surrender at) Appomattox
  • (Battle of) Antietam/Sharpsburg
  • Lincoln was assassinated.

There are others obviously but this is a good list.

94. Abraham Lincoln is famous for many things. Name one.*  

  • Freed the slaves (Emancipation Proclamation)
  • Saved (or preserved) the Union
  • Led the United States during the Civil War
  • 16th president of the United States
  • Delivered the Gettysburg Address

He was a queer Marxist.

95. What did the Emancipation Proclamation do?

  • Freed the slaves 
  • Freed slaves in the Confederacy 
  • Freed slaves in the Confederate states 
  • Freed slaves in most Southern states

“Freed the slaves in the Confederacy but only once the Union Army recaptured those areas” is the most accurate answer.

96. What U.S. war ended slavery?

  • The Civil War

And we’ll do it again, you alt-right motherfuckers.

97. What amendment gives citizenship to all persons born in the United States?

  • 14th Amendment

It do.

98. When did all men get the right to vote?

  • After the Civil War
  • During Reconstruction 
  • (With the) 15th Amendment
  • 1870

1965? Even then we’re not talking about felons.

99. Name one leader of the women’s rights movement in the 1800s.

  • Susan B. Anthony
  • Elizabeth Cady Stanton
  • Sojourner Truth
  • Harriet Tubman
  • Lucretia Mott
  • Lucy Stone

Angelina Grimke.

C: Recent American History and Other Important Historical Information

100. Name one war fought by the United States in the 1900s.

  • World War I 
  • World War II 
  • Korean War 
  • Vietnam War 
  • (Persian) Gulf War

I would also accept: Crazy Snake Rebellion, Border War, the Banana Wars, Bluff War, Mexican Revolution, Russian Civil War, Last Indian Uprising, Operation Beleaguer, Laotian Civil War, First Taiwan Strait Crisis, Lebanon Crisis, Bay of Pigs, Simba Rebellion, Thailand Insurgency, Dominican Civil War, Nancahuazu Guerrilla, Cambodian Civil War, Insurgency in Chile, War in South Zaire, Salvadoran Civil War, Gulf of Sidra Incident, Lebanese Civil War, Invasion of Grenada, Second Gulf of Sidra Incident, Operation El Dorado Canyon, Tanker War, Tobruk Encounter, Invasion of Panama, First Gulf War, Somali Civil War, Bosnian War, Intervention in Haiti, Kosovo War, and Operation Infinite Reach.

101. Why did the United States enter World War I?

  • Because Germany attacked U.S. (civilian) ships
  • To support the Allied Powers (England, France, Italy, and Russia)
  • To oppose the Central Powers (Germany, Austria-Hungary, the Ottoman Empire, and Bulgaria)

Zimmerman Telegram?

102. When did all women get the right to vote? 

  • 1920
  • After World War I
  • (With the) 19th Amendment


103. What was the Great Depression?

  • Longest economic recession in modern history

“What was the Heckin’ Lomgsad?”

104. When did the Great Depression start?

  • The Great Crash (1929)
  • Stock market crash of 1929

When I was in school, I feel like we were taught the stock market crash was this kind of big surprise that came out of nowhere. In reality, the crash that occurred on Black Tuesday had been precipitated by a number of smaller drops in stock market value.


105. Who was president during the Great Depression and World War II? 

  • (Franklin) Roosevelt

Herbert Hoover was president when the Depression began.

106. Why did the United States enter World War II?

  • (Bombing of) Pearl Harbor
  • Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor
  • To support the Allied Powers (England, France, and Russia)
  • To oppose the Axis Powers (Germany, Italy, and Japan)

These are all valid.

107. Dwight Eisenhower is famous for many things. Name one

  • General during World War II
  • President at the end of (during) the Korean War
  • 34th president of the United States
  • Signed the Federal-Aid Highway Act of 1956 (Created the Interstate System) 

I love that we’re like “Eisenhower defeated the Nazis and built highways” but let’s not forget he also kicked off the Vietnam War.

108. Who was the United States’ main rival during the Cold War?

  • Soviet Union
  • USSR
  • Russia

A comical version of communism manufactured primarily to scare Americans?

109. During the Cold War, what was one main concern of the United States?

  • Communism
  • Nuclear war
The life of Old El Paso 'taco girl' ad Mia Agraviador now

110. Why did the United States enter the Korean War?

  • To stop the spread of communism


111. Why did the United States enter the Vietnam War?

  • To stop the spread of communism

Yes, but with less enthusiasm this time.

112. What did the civil rights movement do?

  • Fought to end racial discrimination

It fought for government intervention against discrimination and prejudice. It fought for a government that would protect its citizens.

113. Martin Luther King, Jr. is famous for many things. Name one.* 

  • Fought for civil rights
  • Worked for equality for all Americans
  • Worked to ensure that people would “not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character”

I would also accept: namesake of at least one street, building, or public park in every major American city.

114. Why did the United States enter the Persian Gulf War?

  • To force the Iraqi military from Kuwait

Wait this is a question on the test?

115. What major event happened on September 11, 2001 in the United States?*

  • Terrorists attacked the United States 
  • Terrorists took over two planes and crashed them into the World Trade Center in New York City
  • Terrorists took over a plane and crashed into the Pentagon in Arlington, Virginia
  • Terrorists took over a plane originally aimed at Washington, D.C., and crashed in a field in Pennsylvania

Oh well done for not writing “radical Islamists” like I know you very much wanted to

116. Name one U.S. military conflict after the September 11, 2001 attacks. 

  • (Global) War on Terror
  • War in Afghanistan 
  • War in Iraq 

I would also accept: War in North-West Pakistan, Somali Civil War, Operation Ocean Shield, First Libyan Civil War, Operation Observant Compass, Operation Inherent Resolve, Syrian Civil War, Yemeni Civil War, and Second Libyan Civil War, although I will concede that almost all of these are “part of the War on Terror,” because if you declare war on a concept you can fight war anytime. It’s truly the Bagel Bites of modern war theory.

117. Name one American Indian tribe in the United States.

  • Apache
  • Blackfeet
  • Cayuga
  • Cherokee
  • Cheyenne
  • Chippewa
  • Choctaw
  • Creek
  • Crow
  • Hopi
  • Huron
  • Inupiat
  • Lakota
  • Mohawk 
  • Mohegan
  • Navajo
  • Oneida
  • Onondaga 
  • Pueblo
  • Seminole 
  • Seneca
  • Shawnee
  • Sioux 
  • Teton
  • Tuscarora

For a complete list of tribes, please visit bia.gov.

… okay, I rescind. 1/64th of the questions are about American Indians.

118. Name one example of an American innovation.

  • Light bulb
  • Automobile (cars, internal combustion engine)
  • Skyscrapers 
  • Airplane
  • Assembly line
  • Landing on the moon
  • Integrated circuit (IC)

Skyscrapers is a very good answer but my favorite American innovation is the Filet-O-Fish.


A: Symbols

119. What is the capital of the United States?

  • Washington, D.C. 


120. Where is the Statue of Liberty?  

  • New York (Harbor)  
  • Liberty Island [Also acceptable are New Jersey, near New York City, and on the Hudson (River).]

I appreciate an acknowledgement that this question has an unclear answer.

121. Why does the flag have 13 stripes?*

  • (Because there were) 13 original colonies
  • (Because the stripes) represent the original colonies

It looked cool.

122. Why does the flag have 50 stars?

  • (Because there is) one star for each state
  • (Because) each star represents a state
  • (Because there are) 50 states

We don’t want any more states apparently.

123. What is the name of the national anthem?

  • The Star-Spangled Banner

Is this the only question about the anthem? Weak.

124. The Nation’s first motto was “E Pluribus Unum.” What does that mean?

  • Out of many, one
  • We all become one

This remains a way better motto than “In God We Trust” and we really need to fix it so that “E pluribus unum” is the motto again.

B: Holidays

125. What is Independence Day?

  • A holiday to celebrate U.S. independence (from Britain)
  • The country’s birthday

National Fireworks Injury Day.

126. Name three national U.S. holidays.*

  • New Year’s Day 
  • Martin Luther King, Jr. Day 
  • Presidents Day (Washington’s Birthday)
  • Memorial Day 
  • Independence Day 
  • Labor Day 
  • Columbus Day 
  • Veterans Day 
  • Thanksgiving Day
  • Christmas Day

I would also accept: Black Friday, Toyotathon, New Year’s Eve, Prime Day, and, you know, 9/11.

127. What is Memorial Day?

  • A holiday to honor soldiers who died in military service



128. What is Veterans Day?

  • A holiday to honor people in the (U.S.) military
  • A holiday to honor people who have served (in the U.S. military)