If you’re wondering whether democracy in America is a good model for other nations, you are not alone. A recent Pew survey of 16,000 adults in 16 advanced economies and 2,500 adults in the US reveals that nearly six in ten Americans and five percent of international respondents believe that America’s democracy is not a good example. But what exactly is democracy in America? And how can we improve it? We must start by assessing our own democracy.
Tocqueville’s Democracy in America is the first book to analyze the American experiment. It was published in 1832 and was translated into English two decades later. Although Tocqueville’s original French version was widely acclaimed, it was not reprinted until the early twentieth century. It was translated into numerous languages and remains a classic today. However, many readers don’t know the author’s name. The book’s popularity is not surprising, considering that it’s considered essential reading for students of political and social science.
The US has long touted itself as a “city on a hill.” The nation’s political system was intended to protect democracy and freedom, but that self-styled democracy is suffering from a grave illness. Democracy in the US is, at its core, a capitalist, rich man’s game. Unlike a democracy of the people, American democracy is a far cry from a healthy democracy. There’s no reason to celebrate our nation’s petty differences.
While democracy is a valuable feature of our political system, it is not the only one. Other forms of participation are just as important. Incorporate more young people and involve them in the decision-making process. This is a key factor in the efficient functioning of a democracy. In short, democracy is about putting the will of the people in the hands of those in power. It’s not a good thing to be an outlier and be the sole beneficiary of someone else’s will.
The importance of freedom of thought and assembly is an integral part of democratic societies. These rights enable the public to express ideas, lobby for change, and protest against decisions. A democracy is only as good as the freedom of expression that citizens enjoy. So a democracy can only be successful if its citizens exercise them. The idea of freedom of thought and assembly is important because without it, democracy is not a democracy. And if we are not sure about the future of democracy, what is the point of having a democracy at all?
One important flaw of the winner-takes-all electoral system is that it discourages voter participation. The result is that a president who won the national popular vote may not actually be the one the people wanted. Moreover, this system also exacerbates inequality between states and political parties. Moreover, the democratic system does not encourage voters to participate in elections, so voters in deep blue states and “deep red” states are left out. Moreover, swing states are given disproportionate importance and influence because of the winner-takes-all system.