Monday, October 10, 2016

 Sometimes, in the course of human events, it is necessary for a blog to change ownership and be renewed. Since my mom has stopped posting on here, I stepped up and said I'd like to make it my own. Allow me to introduce myself! I'm Paige (that mysterious girl you might have read about in my mom's previous posts) and, while I hope that heaven isn't anything like high school, I can't deny the power of learning new things. 

    One really interesting thing I've learned about recently is democracy, its form, and how it's helped our nation. Every month, I'm going to add some sort of debate or essay-not necessarily about democracy-but about government in general, for you to consider and comment on! 
So, without further ado: 

I laughed pretty hard upon hearing Oprah Winfrey's voice in my head shouting:
"You get a democracy! You get a democracy! Everybody gets a democracy!!!" I guess you can say that statement is pretty congruent with some periods in history (especially directly after the cold war and 9-11) in which the main goal of our government was to spread itself like a virus. 
    For centuries, most of the world feared the barbaric idea of rule by the people. There were exceptions, of course, although these countries were a harsh minority.

    But this philosophy changed big time through new, "western ideas" and by the mid 19th century, democracy was the thing! Maybe some countries weren't too happy, who knows? Wait, it gets better! Even after the bathtubs of blood that were spilt based on the whole "democracy is right and everyone else is wrong" thing, Americans still debate the subject of influencing change in the other governments. 

    So, should we push for the "right" ideas before anyone else does, and promote peace for mankind, or is it better just to bury our heads in the sand and not got blown off the face of the earth? 

    Before you make your decision, I'd like to make you aware of five arguments for and against the active spread of democracy…

Seemingly, the most self evident argument in favor of worldwide democracy is the fact that we could have greater peace within society. Historical studies have shown that democracies are much less war-like than other regimes. And if you have a bunch of them clumped together they're more likely to agree with one another. Sounds pretty great...

In opposition to this theory, many argue that calling for democracy in other regimes could easily cause outbreaks of war and bloodshed. They claim that poking and prodding at another's agency is more trouble than it's worth. Desire for a change in government should come from within the country itself. 
In short, a new democracy is like a butter knife. It can spread the love, but it can still stab you.

Robert Ingersoll, a politically influential man in the golden age of thought, once said: "We rise by lifting     others." Generosity can be thought of as a virtue and people in favor of spreading democracy are inclined to assume that the world will love what they have to give. Through our service, we will be recognized as enthusiasts and do-gooders (even at a high cost.)

"And who are these "do-gooders" to be spending America's limited money, blood, and energy?!" The other party persists. Members say our regime requires enough maintenance alone, without worrying about surrounding nations. We are already in deep debt and, quite obligated to care for ourselves, thank you very much.

Let's go back to the thought that democracies appear less war-like and take a look at the other side of the situation. For autocracies, oligarchies, and governments down on the totalitarian end of the scale, fighting is common. Because average Joes like us disapprove of living in corrupt, evil places, they flee. What do we get? Refugees. Hundreds of thousands of refugees from Syria alone. Wouldn't it be nice to reduce that number? Democracy can be used as a tool for suffering nations (like our own) in circumstances like this. You know what they say, a democracy a day keeps the less fortunate away…

Wait, who said that? Did they really say that?
The truth is, I made that up. It has a nice ring to it, sure, but people who oppose would not be happy. Aside from a substantial amount of refugees, their argument states, America also has a good system to support these people. And economic benefits come from this inflammation in the United States population. Maybe it's just better to welcome others to our democracy instead of focusing on perfecting theirs.

Terrorists are another group of people that we may want to prevent throughout the world. Autocracy is a lovely playground for terrorism. Therefore, democracies can help put a stop to terror. No more funding and public support from two faced political leaders. Not with the active spread of democracy!

The other side isn't arguing that terrorism is "the bomb"(no pun intended) but what they are saying is that terrorists are smart enough to find loopholes. There is really no quantifiable evidence that democracies stop terrorists. People all over the world have sympathized with Islam's concerns. Plus, even if we all had perfect governments and leaders (which is way too far-fetched to actually happen) there is no guarantee wealthy individuals or organizations won't illegally smuggle money to terrorists. Risky either way.

If everybody could just want democracy, that would be great. The fact of the matter is, they don't all want democracy. And even if a government wants change, they can't always bring it about themselves. Perhaps they don't have the time, the resources, or the votes to make it happen.
Waiting for everyone to act is simply too utopian. We need to help others become democracies before they help themselves become anarchies.

But then, unilateral action is so dangerously dependent on political whim that maybe we shouldn't spread democracy! If these other nations want us to stay out of their business, then we will just stress them out when we're trying to help. Again, anarchy could occur. These regimes might shoot us out of the sky. You really gotta know your audience…

After all this, do you think our government is superior to rule by few and can't be proved wrong? Why should we or should we not spread democracy and let our cups overflow to the world? And if we should, how?

Leave your opinion down in the comments (just remember, be respectful of others' ideas and don't argue)!!!! Thanks for reading this and thinking about it. And don't forget to check back next month for another government related post.

Peace out