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Democracy: Its Origin and Reliability

The author is studying political science. She is always ready to dive into the ocean of history.


We live in a world full of diversity. Every other person has different thoughts and opinions. As the human population grew, there was a need to run the systems of life properly. Have you ever thought that how the world is formed? Have you ever tried to find out how these states have emerged? How the people found out the ways to run a state or a country? How different kinds of governments emerged? Democratic government and its impacts on a state are always an issue that needs scrutiny and attention. When a state is said to be democratic, it's mean that there is tremendous importance of public opinion. Now, the question is why democratic states are still struggling for the sway? Why the representatives are seeking refugees instead of playing their role for the betterment of the country or state? I will try to give answers to all these questions with my analysis and substantial research.

Defining Democracy: A Term to be Understand

The word democracy has its roots in ancient Greek. 'Demos' means 'people' and 'kratos' means 'rule'. We can speculate the definition of democracy from its meaning—the rule of the people. In simple word, it is a kind of government in which people choose their representatives for the governing state. People have the authority to vote for the selection of the legislator. Democracy may be direct or indirect. In a direct democracy, people directly choose the legislative body and may take part in government policies. In an indirect democracy, people choose their representatives who take part in policy-making on their behalf.

Understanding Democracy

Let's Go in Past to Explore Democracy

In ancient Greek, Athens was a democratic state. It was a different democracy than today's democracy. Old people, slaves and woman had no right to take part in votes. Plato was the first philosopher who had raised his voice for women's rights. But in 322 B.C, this democracy came to an end when Macedonian invaded Athens, and the death of Alexander the great was also a ground reason. Aristotle, who known as the father of political science, defined democracy as the worst kind of government. For him, the most appropriate kind was a monarchy. In which the ruler is a philosopher-king. He was of the view that when the government is in the hand of many people who don't have any sense of administration; it is democracy.

The Roman Empire has also played an important role in democracy to some extent. But that was not a democracy. Only a certain large section carried out the responsibilities of the government. As in today's democracy, every citizen may express his or her opinion through voting. Citizenship was also based on special principles. The Greek historian Polybius, who was of the view that constitutionally, the Roman Empire was democratic but in practice, it was owned by affluent aristocrats.

Democracy in Modern Age: the Rampant Expansion of Democratic Ideas

The in which we are living now is probably a "Golden age of democracy". Most people live in the world under the rule of democracy. To classify a state as a democracy; we need to examine whether that country has an "executive branch" and its " legislation" works well or not. And it also depends on votes, which mean that people are using their right to vote for the selection of their representatives. Democracy evolved because of corrupt leadership, the lack of accountability and the tyrannical form of governments.

"Democracy is when the people keep a government in check."

"Democracy is when the people keep a government in check."

Democracy: As a Best Form of Government

Though democracy also has flaws but comparatively less than other kinds of government. The benefits of democracy can be gauged from the fact that it is commonplace in most parts of the world today. In some countries, democracy has had a difficult time, largely due to dictatorships. The smooth running of a democratic system in a country is also a sign of its success. A country's democratic system represents the views of the people there. Its greatest virtue is that it truly protects the rights of the people. What we use today for freedom of expression is because of democracy.

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It is said that autocrats can do well in promoting economic growth, but still we can't deny the fact that the richest and wealthiest states of the world are democratic states.

Democracy and Equality: the Connection Can't be Denied

When we talk about democracy; we must remember the importance of equality. Democracy means that there will be no oppressed group of people, nor a leading group. Despite this, all citizens are equal to use their freedom of expression and can vote according to their will. Democracy helps in controlling inter and intra differences of the state.

Democracy and Transparency

It is an essential duty of democratic governments to gain the trust of their people. Publicity has a crucial role in building up a good relationship between the government and the public. But the famous philosopher, Jeremy Bentham has critically observed that the public has no absolute right to know about government matters and he urged that the law of publicity shouldn't be absolute. If this is absolute, then a favour will be given to the enemy. To secure the dignity of people; it is important to maintain a balance between publicity and secrecy.

Democracy and Human Rights

As the rationale of democracy is set upon the will of the people. Democracy is about protecting the fundamental rights of citizens, regardless of race, caste or creed. When one supports democracy, one must also believe that it is the guarantor of protecting human's fundamental rights. One of the most important responsibilities of democracy is to monitor the problems of the people and to take effective action to eliminate them.

Unstable Politicians: Hurdle in the Way of Transparent Democratic System

As in a democracy, people elect their representatives who perform the tasks of government. They are known as politicians. The significance of politicians is the same as water is important for life. Politicians who run the state system honestly and wisely succeed. The only politician who is good for the survival of the country is the one who thinks of the welfare of the people above all interests. But the tragedy of developing countries is that their politicians are degraded. The biggest reason for this is their personal interests which they prefer to the national interest. This shortcoming of theirs is a major obstacle to the development of the country.

A right delayed is a right denied.

A right delayed is a right denied.

Democracy in Threat: Who is Responsible

In the entire world, the most common threat to democracy is the politics of populist leader and group who remove pluralism and want an unquestionable power to support their particular interests. When national interest becomes blurry and there is an echo of self-interest from all sides, then the board is overthrown.


Each system brings with it some advantages and disadvantages. The systems of those countries are successful who decide with due regard to time and national interest. If personal interest is given priority over national interest, then the country moves towards destruction. The essence of all this is about the human rights which is under the responsibility of state. So to protect these rights, state systems emerged. And the good governance indicates the reliability of the state system.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2021 EK Jadoon

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