Meaning of Democracy

There are many times where we come across the phrase ‘democracy is better’, or that ‘democracy is freedom’. This is mainly heard in western and developed countries or democratic countries in general. However, what is democracy and why is it better? If indeed it is better?

Democracy is a type of government in which the citizens run the country. In the traditionally form of democracy, which developed in Ancient Athens, the people used to directly vote on all the matters concerning the government. However, in the modern democracy, citizens vote to elect representatives, who run the country, on behalf of the citizens.

The main characteristic of democracy is that the power resides within the hands of the people. Within a democracy, the citizens choose and replace the government through free and fair elections. The citizens also actively participate in politics and civic life. Additionally, all citizens have human rights, and there is a structure of law in place that protects the rights of the citizens. In addition to this, the basic elements of democracy are separation of powers, basic civil rights/human rights, religious liberty and separation of church and state.

However, like all government systems, democracy is not pure and ideal. There are many times where governments that call themselves democratic are accused of talking advantage of its citizens, and of not doing what’s best for its people.

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