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Michigander Wins Citizen Bee

June 19, 1990

WASHINGTON (AP) _ Jofi Joseph of Muskegon, Mich., won the fifth annual Citizen Bee on Monday after correctly outlining the constitutional provision governing letters of marque and reprisal.

Joseph, who graduated this month from Muskegon Catholic High School, plans to enroll this fall at Georgetown University in Washington, where he will attend the school of foreign service.

He received a $7,000 scholarship as first prize in the contest, sponsored by the Close Up Foundation in cooperation with the Smithsonian Institution’s Office of Elementary and Secondary Education.

Close Up is a nonprofit organization that provides educational programs on government and citizenship.

Second prize, which carries a scholarship of $5,000, went to Derek Baxter, who will be a senior in the fall at W.T. Woodson High School in Fairfax, Va.

Gautam Dutta, a graduate of Cistercian Prep in Irving, Texas, who plans to go to Yale, won third prize, with a $3,000 scholarship.

Joseph had a final score of 143 points, based on written and oral answers. Baxter had a score of 136 and Dutta of 133.

The final question to Joseph, which was good for 12 points, was to define letters of marque and reprisal and say what branch of government the Constitution empowered to grant them.

The Constitution empowered Congress to grant such letters, authorizing private ships to attack enemy vessels in wartime.

Joseph also answered correctly that Puerto Ricans became American citizens under the Jones Act, passed in 1917 when Woodrow Wilson was president, and that Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev visited Minnesota to encourage people to invest in the Soviet Union.

He slipped up when asked what states, other than Wyoming and Illinois, you would pass through if you traveled in a straight line from Cheyenne, Wyo., to Chicago. He said Colorado and Iowa. The correct answer is Nebraska and Iowa. Joseph answered correctly that the river you would cross is the Mississippi.

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