Constitution USA with Peter Sagal

Watch Constitution USA with Peter Sagal

  • 2013
  • 1 Season
  • 7.2  (43)

Constitution USA with Peter Sagal is a 4-episode documentary TV series presented by public broadcaster PBS in 2013. The show is hosted by Peter Sagal, a noted radio and podcast host, who travels across the United States in a motorcycle to explore the history, meaning, and relevance of the U.S. Constitution in modern times. Each episode follows a theme and takes a thematic and historical approach to examining the Constitution, its creation, and its impact on American society.

The first episode titled "A More Perfect Union" looks at the preamble of the Constitution and its broader vision of unity and progress. Sagal starts his journey in Philadelphia, the birthplace of the Constitution, where he visits Independence Hall to see where the Founding Fathers signed the document in 1787. He then travels to rural Pennsylvania to explore Amish country and learn about the role of religion in American life, a right enshrined in the First Amendment. Sagal also meets with legal scholars, historians, and ordinary citizens to discuss the Constitution's core values, such as individual rights, separation of powers, and federalism. He explores how these principles are applied to contemporary issues, such as immigration, gun control, and healthcare.

The second episode titled "It's A Free Country" looks at the Bill of Rights and its protections for individual liberties. Sagal begins his journey in New York City, where he visits the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island, symbols of America's immigrant heritage and values of freedom and democracy. He then travels to the Midwest to meet with activists and advocates for civil rights, such as the right to free speech, assembly, and the press. Sagal explores how these freedoms have been tested and reinforced over time, especially in times of war, unrest, and social change.

The third episode titled "Created Equal" looks at the 14th Amendment and its struggle to ensure equal protection and due process for all citizens. Sagal begins his journey in Birmingham, Alabama, where he learns about the Civil Rights Movement and its pivotal role in challenging racial segregation and discrimination. He then travels to the Deep South to meet with historians, lawyers, and activists who have championed civil rights and social justice causes. Sagal explores how the Constitution has been amended and interpreted to expand civil rights to more groups, such as women, LGBTQ people, and people with disabilities. He also examines how persistent inequalities, such as income inequality and systemic racism, continue to challenge the notion of equal opportunity and justice.

The fourth and final episode titled "Built to Last?" looks at the challenges and prospects for the Constitution in the 21st century. Sagal returns to Philadelphia to reflect on his journey and ask whether the Constitution can withstand the changing times and forces. He meets with constitutional scholars, political leaders, and ordinary citizens to discuss the role of the Constitution in shaping public policy, resolving legal controversies, and preserving the democratic values that unite the nation. Sagal also explores the issue of constitutional reform, such as term limits, judicial appointments, and campaign finance reform, and debates the merits and risks of tampering with the Constitution.

Overall, Constitution USA with Peter Sagal is an engaging and informative TV series that combines history, law, politics, and culture to examine one of the most important and enduring documents in American history. Sagal's witty and insightful commentary, along with the diverse perspectives and stories of the people he meets, make for a thought-provoking and entertaining viewing experience. So, it can be a great watch for anyone interested in American history, politics, and society.

Constitution USA with Peter Sagal is a series that is currently running and has 1 seasons (4 episodes). The series first aired on May 7, 2013.

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Built to Last?
4. Built to Last?
May 28, 2013
Considering the systems that have kept the Constitution healthy for more than 225 years.
Created Equal
3. Created Equal
May 21, 2013
The high ideals of the Declaration of Independence that "all men are created equal" were not included in the Constitution in 1787. It took three-quarters of a century, and a bloody civil war, before the Fourteenth Amendment of 1868 made equality a constitutional right and gave the federal government the power to enforce it.
It's a Free Country
2. It's a Free Country
May 14, 2013
Peter looks into the history of the Bill of Rights, and takes on stories that involve freedom of speech, privacy and religion.
A More Perfect Union
1. A More Perfect Union
May 7, 2013
Peter Sagal goes on a motorcycle trip cross-country to explore the relevance of the Constitution in modern America. He starts with federal power vs. states' rights. Also, medical marijuana, Obamacare and gun control.
Where to Watch Constitution USA with Peter Sagal
Constitution USA with Peter Sagal is available for streaming on the PBS website, both individual episodes and full seasons. You can also watch Constitution USA with Peter Sagal on demand at Amazon Prime, Google Play and Apple TV.
  • Premiere Date
    May 7, 2013
  • IMDB Rating
    7.2  (43)