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Why Democracy Matters

In a very short period of time, an important electoral race will have come to a close, a winner decided and the political tide of a superpower will continue moving in its current direction or it will shift. The world is watching with interest. The outcome is unimaginably important not just for the United States, but for the world itself.

That said, there’s a growing mistrust and lack of faith in democracy itself. Evidence of corruption exists in democracies around the world, from Italy to Afganistan, Iraq to Russia, and even rumblings closer to home as various lobbying scandals play out across North America and European countries. It seems that no matter where you live, humanity’s faith in democracy has taken a blow.

Of great import in this lack of faith is the tendency for people to feel their vote doesn’t matter. The greater the corruption in a particular region, the more true that feeling is. The greater the political prize, the greater the efforts to suppress certain segments of the voting population as a means of swaying the outcome. For the process to work, it’s essential that we not allow that to happen. For voters, that means stepping into the booth and casting a ballot no matter what.

Democracy is important. It is an ideal upon which every voice in a community counts. Every voice matters. For the system to work, people must trust the politicians, but the politicians must also trust the people.

In a timely speech about why democracy matters, British MP Rory Stewart discusses the issues and raises a call to action for us to rebuild democracy. I urge everybody to watch it, especially those who were considering opting out of voting in the election this weekend.

 

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