Democracy by force” (Nyerere 169). Basically, it’s a government

Democracy was always thought of as the best form of government that can lead a community of people. Its definition by Nyerere is that “democracy is government by discussion as opposed to government by force” (Nyerere 169). Basically, it’s a government by the people in which everyone has the opportunity to change the government at any time. Democracy can produce many great products as well as negative ones. The democratic form of government has the potential to lead a group of people to success, but at some point democracy doesn’t seem like the best way to run a country. For instance the requirements democracy has in order to work efficiently and effectively. It is a government by the people, which means the people need to participate actively in the functions of the government. Democracy also works best when educated people can guide and make informed decisions about the future of the society. The majority must agree in order to make anything happen in a democracy. If the majority doesn’t agree, people separate and democracy is no longer as effective. Also, in certain cases, corruption inside democracy can lead to the downfall of democracy and turn it into another form of government. Democracy has its benefits and disadvantages as well as strict guidelines to make it a democracy. There are many opinions on how effective and efficient democracy is. For now democracy is not the best form of government, but it’s the best until there is a more desirable form. In a democracy, the majority rules. The majority is seen as a benefit to the wellbeing of the society or a great downfall for the individual person. Democracy is a rule by the people, the people make the decisions. Most of the decisions made are those of the majority vote. The minority of the population’s opinion is left out and in some cases can be an issue. Ely explains, “An untrammeled majority is indeed a dangerous thing” (Ely 8).  In addition to Ely’s comment on the dangers of democracy Haider-Markel describes the effects on the minority by saying, “The majority infringes upon minority rights most of the time in direct democracy contests” (Haider-Markel 1). In both of these statements the majority seems like an issue. When a decision is required there will always be multiple views on the issue and ways to fix it. In a democracy the majority party casts their view and affects the result more than all other parties. However, there is an issue with this system. The minority party may provide a better option to solve an issue, but because it was not popular, the opinion is silenced. As Ely explains, majority needs a restriction in order to make the best decisions for the good of the public. Democracy means to provide the people with a freedom and opportunity to choose how they live their life. Nevertheless, the people with the majority obtain their wants and the minority go without. Democracy is rule by the majority, and that can sometimes be a problem, but until there are alternate ways that produce a superior result, then democracy is the best form of government. Through the opposing opinions democracy creates, a separation of society also occurs. Additionally, agreeing on policy takes up time making it longer to make decisions. About a month into 2018, American society has shown just this. The opposing viewpoints created a great impact on the American government as Stolberg highlights, “Congress brought an end to a three-day government shutdown on Monday as Senate Democrats buckled under pressure to adopt a short-term spending bill to fund government operations without first addressing the fate of young undocumented immigrants” (Stolberg et. al “After 3”). The American government has shut down before for longer amounts of time, but any government shutdown causes an impact to the rest of the people. The whole point of democracy is to allow people to rule themselves with the laws and regulations they create. Sometimes people find a topic to agree on and move on to more controversial topics. These controversial topics are those that lead to separation of the people. Much like the South separating from the North because of differing opinions on slavery, the American government still does this today, but it hasn’t gone into the stage of civil war. Democracy wants to provide freedoms to the citizens, but it also encourages opposing opinions that are not naturally occurring. The parties do what is the best interest of that specific group, and because democracy involves multiple groups and opinions, that allows for the separation of society. Also, when each party fight to obtain what they want, they waste valuable time when there could be an easy agreement if both sides compromised. This occurrence furthers the claim that democracy isn’t the best, most efficient form of government, but it the best until there is a superior form. Democracy thrives when those who are informed and educated operate it. In today’s society, many people are informed through the use of technology and are educated, but some fall in the opposite category. As Glaeser explains, “Education raises the benefits of political participation and draws relatively more people to support democracy even when they face only weak incentives” (Glaeser 18). On the opposite side of the spectrum, when one is uneducated, Fowler argues, “A lack of knowledge on the policy positions of the parties significantly hinders the ability of low-socioeconomic-status citizens to translate their preferences into partisan opinions and vote choices” (Fowler 1). Education has been shown to have a great impact on how many people vote in elections and the quality of a single person’s vote. Technology has increased the accessibility to obtain the sources needed to form a viewpoint about a certain party or individual. However, there are still those who don’t use technology, or use it and don’t inform themselves on topics concerning democracy. Democracy needs those who are educated to form their own opinions in an informed way in order to make the right decisions for not just the individual but for the society. A positive for a democracy led by the people is that in its truest form corruption is not very common, but when elite government officials are involved with multiple parties and interests, the views and opinions of those are slightly corrupted. As Sung explains, “Undemocratic countries with extremely low scores on the democratic index experienced an increase in political corruption in the early stage of democratization” (Sung 186). The transition between undemocratic and a country with democracy involves those who take power to make them this way. In democracy many have their own viewpoints on how things should operate, but this could lead to corruption. When people are influenced by the need for power most do whatever it takes to achieve that. In democracy, power would go back to those who make the decisions. In the early stages an individual would find it easier to come to power being that it is a new concept and not many rules are in place. A democracy produces many great results but also leaves room for corruption, which is why it is not a perfect form of government. In American democracy a right to vote is necessary, but many people don’t use that power to change what kind of policy is written. The voter turnout in several elections has not been the highest percent of people to vote on an important topic. Gans indicates, “Voter turnout dipped from 62.3 percent of eligible citizens voting in 2008 to an estimated 57.5 in 2012. That figure was also below the 60.4 level of the 2004 election but higher than the 54.2 percent turnout in the 2000 election” (Gans “2012 Voter”). In addition to the low and decreasing percentages of voter turnout, McClellan explains, “Democracy is a government of the people, by the people, for the people; its citizens must therefore develop the democratic virtues of respect for the rights of individuals, regard for the law, voluntary participation in public life, and concern for the common good” (qtd. in Cohen 206). Democracy is a government that the people control and when the people don’t participate in important elections, then the decision of those elections may not be the best for the country. The right to vote is common with democracy, it is a way to bring power to the citizens and reduce the amount of elite powers a government has, consequently, when people don’t take advantage of that right, the elite powers control the country. Democracy needs participation and when it doesn’t have this it is no longer at the top of the list of successful forms of government. In conclusion, democracy has its qualities that make it successful, but when examined closely, the imperfections start to show, and democracy starts to be less than perfect. Given that democracy works on the majority rule basis that separates the people, which in turn takes more time in decision making qualifies democracy as a mediocre government. That, combined with only really thriving when there are educated and participating voters, as well as sometimes being corrupted, democracy isn’t the best. Democracy is indeed not perfect, but it is the best option for a government where the people have the power. Until a rival form is created, democracy is the best choice.

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