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For me, democracy is our greatest common value

For me, democracy is our greatest common value. The ability of expressing our opinion on any topic regardless our race, gender, social class or political affiliation. Democracy along with liberal rights are one of the greatest values of our 21st century society and this is the reason why democracy is something we have to fight for. Something which worth to fight for. Nowadays when we witness the rise of more and more populist anti-democratic leaders around the globe such as Donald Trump or Viktor Orbán, especially now we have to stick to our common values, and defend them no matter the cost. The future of our society lies in this fight, the future of a democratic, equal and prospering society. The future of our children, which we wish to hold the very same values for which we fought for centuries in Europe. Although it was hard to achieve what we have now (equality, freedom of speech, human rights, democratic system), it seems even harder to preserve it. Many would say it is impossible, but only if we want to do it all alone, each country by itself. We have to recognize that democracy is the most precious common value of ours, which we have to stand up for together. Our strength lies in unity, therefore we have to act together, because together we can do it!
1 month, 3 weeks ago in What does Democracy mean to you?
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The threat of new autoritarian goverments is real. We saw it with the elections in Brazil. Brazil chose to become a liberal (economy) and conservative (ideology) state. It happens because by the time the left was in the goverment there were corruption scandals that blinded all the social achievements made by the left for the people. I was born in Brazil. I see that the major concern of the people is about security and corruption, and the alt-right seizes this opportunity to impose privatizations ,less rights for workers using the conservatorism as a cover of verticality. They use the technique of the nazis , blame the left for all the bad that the world has. So how we can save our people of these mistakes? The only way is trough credibility. We need to remember history everyday. We need to show all the achievements that the left has made and still does for people’s lives and democracy. We need to show that the left of today is not the communism of the past. And we need young influencers to do this job. People are not very open to mainstream opinion makers anymore, they want the menssage from people they can relate with. This is why new movements grow so fast, because they are made with simple people. We need to start a battle using knowledge, history, our achievements and our proposals. And the new proposals must show why solidarity is good for economy, freedoom and happiness for all. And we can never forget about working people! Those people, the working class, are the most important at the moment. If we forget, then they will forget our legacy of fight for a better world .

1 month, 1 week ago in What does Democracy mean to you?
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Living in a democratic regime give us the opportunity of expressing ourselves without fearing persecution for doing it. Democracies should also have separation of powers, respect human rights and promote the active civic and political participation of all its citizens. In my country (Portugal), the memory of the Estado Novo dictatorship that lasted from 1933 until 1974 and the political arrests, poverty and war in Africa, that it brought still lives in many people’s minds. When in 1986, Portugal entered in European union the country entered a new era of development and progress and that is why here, democratic institutions are widely respected just like the European Union itself. Nowadays, democracy is consolidated in Portugal and the country is recovering well from the crisis and a hard Austerity program supported by the former right-wing government, however unfortunately that is not the case in other parts of Europe in which democracy is under threat, with anti-democratic and far-right forces rising up not just in Poland and Hungary, were they hold the government, but also in Germany, Austria, Italy or France. These forces are a threat to progress and European values because they don’t respect the rights of minorities and political opponents promoting a divided society in which people start distrusting or even hating each other for differences like gender, race or religion. This strategy may be pure demagogy but it is effective because their anti-establishment and anti-EU speech is shifting many working class people from left wing parties (socialists or social democrats) towards those right-wing populists or even far-right parties. That is why it is of paramount importance for S&D parties to regain the support of the working class in those countries because they are the key to keep the far-right out of the power and to ultimately save democracy in the EU.

Information is essential for an active democracy, citizens must be informed about the past, the present and the future Rousseau who, in the Social Contract (1762) had launched the famous accusation against the English representative regime (but valid in general): The British believe they are free. In reality, they are only once every four years when they elect their representatives in Parliament. For the rest, they are slaves of those who have elected. While some people are frustrated and staying at home on election day trust me other people vote. But here’s the problem, democracy continues with or without you. They’re are voting in every election, from city council to parliament, because the people who are voting know the impact to that the leaders that they pick can have on every single part of our lives. When you don’t vote, you letting other people make some really key decision about the life you’re going to live the place you’re going to live how it’s going and what that will decide for you. You’re just saying that you do it! And you may not like what they decide. You may not like living with the consequences of others’ choices. But that’s what happened when you’re home and do not go to vote. You are essential to put your future in the hands of others. And the truth is, some people hope you’ll do it. Voting is not difficult, it doesn’t take long, it’s just a few minutes, it’s so easy, the only way to make a change in this country is to go out and vote for the change you’re looking for. Vote, no matter who you vote for. Voting means participation and being involved in this. Your vote can make the difference, it will do absolutely. Remember that the election can be decided by 10 votes 20 votes, sometimes it is only a small margin. And people believe that they need millions and millions of votes. No. It is not for the leader you choose, the power of our democracy is in us. The person you are looking for is standing in your shoes, you are the person who can save you from this. We are our heroes, we are our leaders who do not change. And it does not matter that those who want to manage our vote are above us!

1 month, 2 weeks ago in What does Democracy mean to you?
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