i was sitting in my policy class this week and we were discussing congress and how a bill becomes law and then the old schoolhouse rock “i’m just a bill” came up in the conversation. There were several of my classmates who have never heard of it and here’s the shocking part…they had no clue what schoolhouse rock was…ugh…i guess for the first time i felt my age…i have to admit i am in a class where most of the people were born after 1980…but come..i thought everyone had at least heard of schoolhouse rock..where else could you learn about american history, science, math, grammar and watch saturday morning cartoons??? and people thought tv wasn’t educational…i still to this day can recite all the words to the preamble albeit i have to sing because that little ditty from schoolhouse rock pops in the brain…
my personal favorite is “i’m just a bill”…here’s a pic of Bill and the lyrics…you can sing along if you want…no one will laugh at you. you can “sing along” with your other favorites if you want here at this schoolhouse rock lyrics site.
Boy: Woof! You sure gotta climb a lot of steps to get to this Capitol Building here in Washington. But I wonder who that sad little scrap of paper is?
I’m just a bill.Yes, I’m only a bill.And I’m sitting here on Capitol Hill.Well, it’s a long, long journeyTo the capital city.It’s a long, long waitWhile I’m sitting in committee,But I know I’ll be a law somedayAt least I hope and pray that I will,But today I am still just a bill.
Boy: Gee, Bill, you certainly have a lot of patience and courage.
Bill: Well I got this far. When I started, I wasn’t even a bill, I was just an idea. Some folks back home decided they wanted a law passed, so they called their local Congressman and he said, “You’re right, there oughta be a law.” Then he sat down and wrote me out and introduced me to Congress. And I became a bill, and I’ll remain a bill until they decide to make me a law.
I’m just a billYes I’m only a bill,And I got as far as Capitol Hill.Well, now I’m stuck in committeeAnd I’ll sit here and wait While a few key Congressmen discuss and debateWhether they should let me be a law.How I hope and pray that they will,But today I am still just a bill.
Boy: Listen to those congressmen arguing! Is all that discussion and debate about you?
Bill: Yeah, I’m one of the lucky ones. Most bills never even get this far. I hope they decide to report on me favourably, otherwise I may die.
Bill: Yeah, die in committee. Oooh, but it looks like I’m gonna live! Now I go to the House of Representatives, and they vote on me.
Boy: If they vote yes, what happens?
Bill: Then I go to the Senate and the whole thing starts all over again.
Boy: Oh no!
Bill: Oh yes!
I’m just a billYes, I’m only a billAnd if they vote for me on Capitol HillWell, then I’m off to the White HouseWhere I’ll wait in a lineWith a lot of other billsFor the president to signAnd if he signs me, then I’ll be a law.How I hope and pray that he will,But today I am still just a bill.
Boy: You mean even if the whole Congress says you should be a law, the president can still say no?
Bill: Yes, that’s called a veto. If the President vetoes me, I have to go back to Congress and they vote on me again, and by that time you’re so old…
Boy: By that time it’s very unlikely that you’ll become a law. It’s not easy to become a law, is it?
But how I hope and I pray that I will,But today I am still just a bill.
Congressman: He signed you, Bill! Now you’re a law!
Bill: Oh yes!!!