The Benefits and Drawbacks of Democracy


Democracy is an ideal system of government that has been praised by many for its ability to provide equal rights to all people and represent them in society, allowing citizens to voice their opinions and make decisions. However, a democratic system of governance is not without its drawbacks. Some of these issues include voter ignorance, political manipulation of the media by influential individuals, and high costs associated with holding elections. Furthermore, democracy may lead to social and economic inequalities between different groups of people due to differing socio-economic statuses and their resulting voting power. Ultimately, it is up to individuals to decide whether or not democracy is the right form of government for their own country.

Traditionally, philosophers have justified democracy along at least two different dimensions: instrumentally, by reference to its outcomes compared with other methods of political decision making; and intrinsically, by reference to values that are inherent in the method (Caplan & Rawls 1977; Brennan 2016). More recently, there has been increasing interest in the idea that democratic institutions can enhance the moral character of citizens. This is based on the observation that people who take part in making public decisions are forced to think carefully and rationally about their choices, and also to listen to other viewpoints before acting. This can have positive effects on the characters of participants, as it makes them more willing to compromise and respect others.

However, it should be noted that democratic participation is not necessarily a good thing, and it is possible for the institutions of a democracy to become corrupted or undemocratic as a result of the pressures of politics. For example, a politician might choose to use his or her office for his or her personal gain rather than for the benefit of the community; in this case, the institution becomes less likely to be seen as legitimate and trustworthy.

In addition, it has been argued that democratic systems can lead to inequality because they are not always effective at addressing the underlying issues of poverty or disease. This is because it is often impossible to enact policies that address these issues effectively without taking into account the interests of different social and monetary classes. It is therefore important for democracy to be practised at a local level, where issues of concern are more easily addressed and the impact of votes is greater.

In summary, democracy is an important tool for promoting prosperity and liberty around the world. While it has its flaws, it is a vital means of governing that should be encouraged in all countries where it is possible and appropriate. In the end, it is up to individual nations to determine whether or not a democracy suits their own national contexts, and to work together internationally in support of the development of a global democracy.