Democracy as the Best Form of Government Essay
A democracy is a form of governance characterized by power sharing. The implication of this is that all the citizens have an equal voice in the way a nation is governed. This often encompasses either direct or indirect involvement in lawmaking. “Democracy” can be a very delicate subject for any writer.
Throughout history, various scholars, including ancient philosophers, have had a divergent view on whether democracy is the best form of governance (Kelsen 3). Some of these arguments are discussed in this essay. Democracy appears to go hand in hand with national unity.
This is particularly true because this form of governance is all about people, and these people are working together towards attainment of national goals. The cohesiveness also results from the freedom prevailing in a democratic environment. Unity and liberty in a nation lay a fertile ground for economic and social growth (Weatherford 121).
In a democratic form of government, the entire citizenry is cushioned against exploitation and all form of abuse. As opposed to other governance approaches (for instance monarchy and dictatorship), democracy engages the people in decision-making processes. This ensures efficient delivery of basic services such as education, health care, and security.
Moreover, these services will be of high quality. Having people govern themselves significantly minimizes the risk of running a nation into chaos. In operational democracies, policies must undergo thorough scrutiny by many organs of government and stakeholders before they are made laws. The modalities of implementing the laws are also carefully determined.
In such a corporate system, it would be rare for all the involved people to be wrong. Therefore democracy protects a nation against the consequences of human errors. As a consequence of reduced possibility for human errors, people will experience a nation devoid of civil wars and strife. This atmosphere, in turn, perpetuates the general growth of a nation.
Democracy acts as a framework within which the law about the basic human rights operates (Barak 27). In a democratic environment, the law gives equal entitlement to the bill of rights with total disregard of race, ethnicity or economic class.
On the other hand, democracy may not be worth the high status it has been accorded for centuries by many schools of thought. Democracy gives an opportunity for all citizens to vote (Williamson 36). This can be technically hazardous to a nation. An average voter is not adequately equipped with the necessary information on the economic and political aspects of a nation.
The direct implication is that a fairly large percentage of voters will base their choice on limited and incorrect information. This situation can greatly impair development. Democratic approaches tend to slow down the process of policy-making and implementation (Dahl 49). This is due to the bureaucracies associated with democracy.
For example, it may take twelve months for parliament to debate over a bill, pass it into law and fully enforce it. In a dictatorial system, however, the same process would take utmost one day. For many years, democracy has been synonymous with political instability (Snell 18). The high turnover rate of governments comes with drastic changes in national and international policies.
New governments tend to attract much criticism from the media and non-governmental bodies. This criticism and alteration of international relations policies keep off foreign investors, something that can have immense economic implications to a nation.
The seemingly most feared danger of democracy relates to the basic rights of the minority. A case in point is the Netherlands. The Dutch parliament enacted a law against female genital mutilation. The Somali living in the Netherlands could not have a say in this because they are a small group.
In conclusion, the name a government gives itself is immaterial. Whether a government calls itself democratic, anarchy, monarchy, or dictatorial, the most important question should be “Are the people getting back what they deserve?”
Barak, Aharon. The Judge in a Democracy. New Jersey: Princeton University Press, 2006. Print.
Dahl, Robert. Democracy and its Critics. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1989. Print.
Kelsen, Hans. “Foundations of Democracy.” Ethics 66.1 (1955):1–101.
Snell, Daniel. Flight and Freedom in the Ancient Near East. Leiden: Brill Publishers, 2001. Print.
Weatherford, McIver. Indian givers: how the Indians of the America transformed the world. New York: Fawcett Columbine, 1988. Print.
Williamson, Thames. Problems in American Democracy. Montana: Kessinger Publishing, 2004. Print.
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