Feature Article of Tuesday, 20 November 2012
Columnist: The Emperor
Indeed, the architects of democracy must be turning in their graves. I, for one, wouldn't be surprised — for democracy has become anything but democratic! Perhaps, our understanding of this particular system of government isn't what it’s supposed to be. Hence, our inability to do it justice. So, what's there to understand about democracy? We've been indoctrinated to believe that democracy is synonymous to freedom! Again, we’ve been told that a democratic system of government is of the people, by the people, and for the people — but the question, which one needs to ask is; what kind of people is it referring to? Mind you, ones needs to be specific. As you and I know, there are different classes of people. You have the lower class, middle class, and your upper class. By no means can we consider the three aforementioned classes one and the same — for they aren't! Yes, the three classes of people may have the right to vote, but they aren't the same. They are separated by wealth and social status, amongst others. So, again, what kind of people is it referring to? Well, let's take a look, shall we?
Throughout the course of human history, those with wealth and prestige have been the ones with power. I call them the kingmakers, but they’re also called the privileged ones due to their wealth! Now, the privileged ones can be found in the upper class — and those in the middle class serve as a buffer between the opposite classes. Namely, the upper and the lower class. The reason why I called those in the upper class the kingmakers is because; not only do they control the politics of a nation, they control the socio-economic affairs and the circulation of its wealth as well. In addition to this, they also make the socio-economic laws and policies to their own approval — and those in the middle and the lower class have no choice but to obey. In a nutshell, those in the upper class dictate to the rest in the name of democracy. Should it come as a surprise? No! Mind you, democracy can be used to practice dictatorship — for those who control the wealth in a so-called democratic setting also control the people. Of course, one cannot control the masses without division. Hence, the deliberate creation of the various socio-classes within the so-called democratic societies around the globe.
So, really, when they present a democratic government as a government of the people, by the people, and for the people — the people whom they're referring to are those people in the upper class — not those people in the middle and the lower class. In other words, they’re referring to the haves — not the have-nots. So, with this in mind, why do those in the middle and the lower class continue to vote, when those in the upper class are the ones making the laws? Well, we've been taught to believe that democracy means freedom of choice. And so, the said group of people continue to vote for upper class dictatorship, thinking they are practicing freedom. Indeed, how foolish. But then, who says the butcher isn't king in the land of the pig? That said, I am tempted to believe that our modern day democracy isn't what the Greek philosophers and thinkers had in mind. In fact, I would be surprised if they did. And so, the question is; if modern day democracy isn't what they had in mind, then, what type of democracy did they believe in? The answer to this question is direct democracy. But, what's direct democracy? Direct democracy is a form of democracy whereby the people propose and pass the laws themselves.
Therefore, having no need for political parties or parliamentarians to make decisions for them. The people make their own decisions through referendums! They also represent themselves directly as opposed to electing others to represent them. In short, power is in the hands of all the people, when it comes to direct democracy — not in the hands of a few! Dear reader, this is the true essence of democracy. This is democracy as envisioned by those who fought for its existence! Remember, wherever there’s true democracy — there’s truth, social equality and justice for all — not for some or a few. Wherever there’s true democracy, there’s unity and understanding — not confusion. Better yet, wherever there’s true democracy, there’s equal distribution of wealth. Modern day democracy — with its multipartyism, isn’t democracy! It cannot be democracy because it isn’t democratic. If anything, it's a hierarchical system of government whereby those at the top control those in the middle and the bottom. Contrary to popular belief, multipartyism isn't about choice, or the right to choose. It's separatism — Apartheid. It’s us against them! One political party against the other. Division, to be precise.
Democracy, on the other hand, is us. Each and every single one of us! It means the equal sharing of power amongst all the people. It also means inclusion — not the illusion of inclusion! A couple of weeks from now, Ghana's electorate will be heading to the polls to vote as customary. The questions — which need to be asked are; why vote for somebody to represent you, when you can represent yourself? And, why vote somebody into power who will deny you the right to participate in the law making process — which decides the fate of a nation? It just doesn't make sense, or, does it? Remember, those who make the laws dictate to those who don’t — and those who are being dictated to can’t call themselves free. This should be understood! And so, to me, it’s more than meaningless to have the right to vote without having the right to participate in the law making process in your own land of birth. Or, don’t you reckon, dear reader? Please, talk back to me!
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