Is American Democracy Failing?
In a democracy ultimate control resides with its citizens. If citizens collectively use their power, all public policies are within their control. Current conditions in America suggests that America’s democracy is not serving its citizens well. Why isn’t American democracy performing to its potential?
While the causes are multiple, a fundamental factor is that leaders manipulate voters so as to remain in power. A perfect example is gerrymandering. Another is withholding information or providing false information (Lying). Yet a third is discouraging or preventing citizens from voting (voter suppression ). Many American leaders have mistreated citizens.
The consequences of these manipulations “feed on themselves”. If voters feel their votes have no impact, they become increasingly uninformed and inactive. Ignorant and/or inactive citizens leave themselves wide open to manipulation by officials in power who pursue their interests at the expense of the American people. This is at the heart of why American democracy is failing.
Consider the following and judge for yourself:
Manipulation of Citizens by Leaders
- “Manipulation of the People”, John Smith, 2005
- “Leadership or Manipulation”, CHP Leaders Blog, 2016
- “A Ladder of Citizen Participation”, Sherry R Arnstein, 1969
- “Failed Citizenship, Civic Engagement, and Education”, James A. Banks, 2015
- Active Citizenship
- The Whys of American Ignorance, Consortiumnews.com, 2013
- Naturally born American Citizens perform more poorly than Naturalized citizens