In a weird twist of irony, Trump might be inspiring more Americans to read the U.S. Constitution for the first time since middle school. After his largely publicized feud with the family of a fallen Muslim-American solider , The New York Times has reported that the sale of pocket constitutions have soared.
At the Democratic National Convention, the Khan family rose to speak against the Islamophobic rhetoric of Donald Trump and the entire GOP during this election cycle. Khizr Khan, the soldier’s father, blasted Trump for inflammatory statements and discriminatory policy proposals.
“Have you even read the United States Constitution?” he rhetorically asked the Republican nominee to cheers from the DNC. “I will gladly lend you my copy,” he said as he pulled out a pocket-sized version from his coat. The crowd erupted even louder.
By the way, you did read that correctly; crowd, DNC, constitution, and cheered were all in the same sentence. 2016, is weird.
On the website Amazon.com, the pocket constitution published by the National Center for Constitutional Studies was number two on the best-selling book list, trailing only Harry Potter and the Cursed Child for the top spot. For those of you a little less in touch with modern pop-culture, that’s a pretty big deal.
In addition to the copies for purchase, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) has started giving constitutions away free of charge. In announcing their promotion, they even thanked Khazir Khan on their official Twitter account.
— ACLU National (@ACLU) July 29, 2016
According to a spokesperson, it is now the ACLU’s goal to get a copy of the country’s founding document into every American home. “And it would be great if people actually read it, ” marketing head Lorraine Kenny said.
Many pocket constitutions come with additional commentary or readings. Conservative, liberal, and libertarian groups distribute annotated copies that put their own spin on the document to shed the most favorable light on their policy positions.
To read the Constitution spin-free, you can check out the text on the National Archives’ website here.