About the Future of Democracy

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Democracy is about you. It is about you being able to participate and having influence. It is about you being responsible, showing consideration, participating in your community, thinking independently, and demanding commitment from yourself. And it demands that everybody else does so too.

It sounds like hard work, but that is the nature of democracy. It is a daily grind, but the fruits of this labour are infinitely rewarding; first and foremost, it is a lot of fun to live in freedom and to be able to develop yourself - within limits - as you please. Democracy promises general prosperity and free access to information, music, art, entertainment and constructive encounters between fascinating thoughts of all kinds.

Furthermore, democracy is the most stable and least violent kind of governance, because democracy, as opposed to all other kinds of governance, can incorporate and appreciate those who are different. In a democracy, there is no need to oppress people who are not exactly like the majority in order for the system to work. The government’s use of violence against its citizens is therefore minimal.

There is no other kind of governance that can provide us and those we love with such rich opportunities for self-expression and meaningful lives as democracy does.

There are many threats to democracy and it may seem like an overwhelming task to establish a democracy or to maintain one that already exists. However, it doesn't have to be like that and one of the reasons is that all humans have an innate need for recognition and to express themselves. We all share the dream of freedom; we all need safety and security. We are all born with empathy, a spontaneous identification with our fellow human beings. These things are common to all humans and, at the end of the day, they are what democracy is about and what it is based on, so there is no culture or part of the world where democracy is not an option.

Democracy has a great future, if we want it. If you want it. The following pages are about what you, your friends, your local community, and your country can do to advance, protect and consolidate democracy.

Next chapter: Freedom and Security