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  • Writer's pictureTrusha Desai

Just Democracy

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The Oxford Dictionary (online) states that the noun “democracy” stands for the system of government by the whole population or all eligible members of a state, typically through elected representatives. We might quibble as to how an entire population would govern through its elected representatives. We might say that we do not agree as the members of a state (eligible or otherwise) about anything. How then, might we govern? How then, might we stand up for the rights of the many, never mind the rights of the few? How then, might our singular voices ~ in the wilderness ~ be heard? If we speak, when we speak, who will listen, let alone act or pass laws that would bind upon the rest of the people? If those laws that might govern our human rights, are passed by the governing institutions: who will ensure that our rights are indeed upheld by the rest of the populace? Does this mean that we give up on elections? Does this mean that we give up on the system of parliamentary democracy? Does this mean that as I am not certain that anyone will listen to my voice if I speak, when I speak, I am justified in doing what I think is right, for that is to my benefit? Does this mean that if I believe that democracy and its systemic institutions and creations like the various courts of law, have not heard me or seen my plight, I may do what I believe is right? For after all, who decides who is right or wrong in this world? Does democracy and its institutions decide what is right? Or do the statutes and legalese ~ that the majority of us do not read or know an iota about ~ stand up and uphold the rights of each and every one of us? For we know well, through consequentialism, through the class of normative ethical theories (if indeed we do believe in ethics of any dimension) that the ends do not justify the means.

Going back to the Oxford Dictionary (for that is the only semblance of reality in today’s world, democratic or otherwise), as we mutter that it all is merely semantical ~ there is an extension to the meaning of “democracy”: control of an organization or group by the majority of its members. This brings us to the principle of consensus and majority, whether it is a razor-thin 0.0001%, yes, just that one silent, sighing voice in a corner of the Universe that the rest of us never did see or hear: that solitary voice crept in and tipped the balance. And democracy ruled, democracy won.

Does this mean that the remaining voices that were over-ruled were incorrect? Does this mean that the voices that were over-turned, have been silenced, or should remain quiet until eternity?

If we look back at history, it has been the single voices, those who were pushed to the rear of the bus … who eventually did win: they rustled up the forces of democracy. This reminds us again, that democracy did not win by taking pot-shots against the rest of the people. Suicide bombers may not overtake democracy. For democracy is not fearful. Democracy stands straight and tall and proud. And eventually, democracy is just.

Along with strategy (political and run-of-the-mill strategic planning), I also zoom in on coaching, management and small business consulting, accounting, GST reporting, personal taxes, payroll, QuickBooks, Sage 50 ...

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