Yes. America is a democracy
Don’t trip up as you walk in here: there’s two related arguments.
We hear the argument from some people that America is not a democracy because the Constitution doesn’t include the word “democracy.” That’s idiotic. It’s like saying a horse is not a horse because it doesn’t walk around with the word HORSE written on it.
This nation is a functioning democracy because it contains the mechanics. The Constitution says the people own the place. And the people run it. Except that since there’s acres of people, it’s a two-step process: we vote for representatives, they carry our wishes to the big decision-making buildings in DC, if we don’t like what they do, we vote them out. That happens.
Next. If you voted last time, you acknowledged that process. You used it. You use the democratic machinery, you have to admit it’s a democracy. Like if you use an elevator, and you say, “this is not an elevator,” then we’ll have to find a new notch on the IQ scale just for you.
Yes, this is a democracy, and the way it works, all the mechanics of it, the representative workings the system is specified in the Constitution, so if you can read all that and still say America is not democracy, you’re no friend of reason.
But people do that. They insist it’s not a democracy, that it’s a republic. Do they realize what an insult that is, because if America is just a republic it gets classified with the likes of The People’s Republic of China, or Zimbabwe — which are republics only for the sole definition: they don’t have royalty running the country. We’re not like those. Also, we choose not to be run by the military. Not to be run by a church (well, except Utah). Not to be run by the ultra-rich who nobody voted for. Not by technical specialists who nobody voted for – because all of that is unconstitutional. And we cannot have no government because that is anarchy (although we have Libertarians, who are like anarchists with cars).
So if you have ever voted, don’t say this is not a democracy, that’s like riding a bicycle and saying, this is not a bicycle.
Listen, if you’re conservative, last eight years, you voted for Bush. Twice. Remember him – the one with the smirk on his face on television while he talked about killings? We all watched that smirk thinking: somebody put the right string on the wrong yo-yo. But you remember what he said? Said he was bringing democracy to foreign countries. Now. Would he say that, if America itself wasn’t a democracy? Obviously not. So the man you voted for, Mr. Bush, believed in democracy here.
And you voted.
Next. The second related argument is a bit different. It says: America may be a democracy, but it should not be. At first when you hear that, you think, that idea is off the short bus.
We’re not done. No, as unAmerican as it is, that’s an argument you hear. The argument says that American is worse because it is a democracy. They say, beware mob rule, saying he nation would do better is it was run by an elite, who got up there by survival of the fittest.
That is not from the Constitution. Because the framers of the Constitution believed in the greatest good for the greatest number. It’s an argument from Social Darwinism, and it says life is a struggle and physical survivors are the leaders we want for this nation. It’s an argument that says, it doesn’t matter what method the fit survive, they are still the best. The argument never did made any sense, it’s a bitchy, saturnine point of view that competition is brutish, the idea that strength is more important that goodness.
Wrong. The fittest members of society are not the best. They are only the strongest. So, you want the nation should be run by weightlifters?
But these people keep running their argument ‘America should not be a democracy.’ Some survivalist ideology so scrappy it almost looks like dragged through a Tijuana animal shelter. You read their websites, your computer starts blinking red. – In some ways, however, if they do read blogs and spray their vapid opinion around, they are at least stirring the information part of democracy.
Then they tell you it’s not a democracy.
These are people who tell you America is not a democracy, and then they’re first in line at the polling booth. Who does that? They followed the candidates, talked up the one they like, trashed the one they didn’t like, voted and then: it’s not a democracy.