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Is direct democracy superior to representative democracy? Show more Show less
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At a time when voters are increasingly disengaged from the political process and disillusioned with their elected officials, many are starting to question whether direct democracy could hold the answer to solving the problem of the growing democratic malaise.

Yes, direct democracy is superior Show more Show less

Direct democracy is the only way to truly represent the will of the people.
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Direct democracy enables open participation

Direct democracy enable the participation of the all stake holders of their territory specially the citizens
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The Argument

Direct democracy allows all citizens to participate in democratic decision making. This differs from representative democracy because there are no intermediaries (the representatives) who make decisions on behalf of another group by claiming representation through elections. There is generally no voting for candidates or parties under direct democracy. Direct democracy can manifest in many different forms, such as having a rotating assembly of citizens who vote on decisions or having all citizens vote on every issue. Overall, direct democracy generally involves citizens voting on specific issues frequently, making decisions themselves rather than electing representatives or parties to make decisions for them.[1] Direct democracy can correct many of the biggest issues with representative democracy. For one, elected officials frequently do not actually reflect the groups that they claim to represent. Elected officials are not legally bound to vote the way that the people who elected them want them to vote.[2] Additionally, there are many instances of voting for elected officials being difficult or impossible for certain citizens, such as felons and those without government-issued IDs. Voter suppression mostly affects minority groups. For instance, in South Carolina, 81,938 minority voters lack government-issued ID, meaning they can't vote.[3] Thus, under representative democracy, elected officials will not be accurate representation for many minority groups. Under direct democracy, widespread voting is encouraged, and even if voter suppression occurs, there isn't the risk of the suppressed group being entirely unrepresented, as there is when an elected candidate makes decisions on behalf of a group. Corruption can also take place much more easily in representative democracy than in direct democracy. Candidates for election may intentionally misrepresent their beliefs, their stances on issues, their policy goals, and their overall political mission to win over more voters. Candidates can easily abuse the system to achieve more political power by lying to voters. Also, once in office, elected officials can make decisions that favor their personal financial gain, rather than making decisions that benefit those that they represent.[2] Under direct democracy, this simply cannot happen. With no elected officials, there cannot be corrupt or otherwise dishonest elected officials. Direct democracy avoids all of the issues that can be caused by having elected officials. Instead, all citizens can participate in determining what they want their country/government to look like. Decisions can be made by the people themselves, not by representatives who may be making decisions for their own personal gain or to benefit only some privileged groups.

Counter arguments

Direct democracy is very time inefficient. It could take months or even years to get every single person to vote on an issue. Also, if every single person had to vote on every single local, state, and federal issue, then it may end up that people need to spend literally all of their time voting. There simply isn't enough time in people's days to constantly vote on every political issue. If voting ended up taking a significant portion of people's time on a consistent basis, some people may choose not to vote. For instance, if voting demanded even an hour's worth of people's time every week, many people may choose not to participate because they don't have that hour to spare. Thus, people who cannot fit in the time to be constantly voting would be excluded from democratic participation, which makes direct democracy ineffective. With representative democracy, people only need to vote a few times to elect their representatives, which is much more time efficient.[4]

Premises

Rejecting the premises

References

  1. https://www.britannica.com/topic/direct-democracy
  2. https://www.thoughtco.com/representative-democracy-definition-pros-cons-4589561
  3. https://www.aclu.org/facts-about-voter-suppression
  4. https://www.thoughtco.com/what-is-direct-democracy-3322038
This page was last edited on Monday, 20 Jul 2020 at 21:42 UTC

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