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What is democracy?

Definition of democracy says that it is “a system of government by the whole population or all the eligible members of a state, typically through elected representatives.” However I would say that this phrase is poor. Why? Because democracy is not just a system. It is the idea that the people can cooperate with each other for the better future. It is present in all patterns of our lives. From the early childhood when we vote what we want do do, play, through the primary school and high school where we choose our representatives to the school council. But even when we want to go out somewhere in a bigger group we discuss several ideas, compare them, debate to make a final decisions. The problem about populists is that they’re using the problems of the people – not to solve them, not to help their citizens. They do this to get in charge of the country and after that they do everything to stay in power – now matter what cost it brings. Our duty is to show people that there’s always an alternative, that if they have problems – they can come with them to their representatives. If they’re not satisfied with them then they shoul candidate. What I mean is that we need to make it possible for them. Because who knows better what need correction, improvement in our society, union than our own citizens?
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When I had to write the other day some words on democracy on a whiteboard at an exhibition. We learned in school many times that the word democracy came from the Greek and literally translates to that the power belongs to the people. But what is the problem that we simply can’t understand the importance of it when we look around? We see people not being able or hindered to vote in other countries and we feel bad because they have to live with leaders, that were not the choice by the majority but on our skin we, my generation in Austria, has never experienced it. We were encouraged to go to vote as soon as we can from different institutions since we can remember but only in recent years the awareness about how important it really is showed in numbers when we had to face the chance of having Norbert Hofer as our president. The increased number of voters didn’t happen because we were just acting by what we have been told, it was because people didn’t want to live with a right wing president or earlier at the municipal election with a major called HC Strache. Also now, in the recent election 2017, more and more younger people went to vote and we had 80 percent turnout of voters. So that’s the thing with democracy and maybe thats the best thing: in good times we can’t even imagine what it would be without it! Democracy is something that makes us believe that we are so far away from all the absolutistic tyrants and atrocities that we can actually forget about it in our life of wealth and chances. But as mentioned, slowely the number of people who are getting to the polls in times of chance will be raising again because I believe, my generation will not accept any more inequality that the recent government is spreading into peoples mind and we will feel importance of democracy on our skin again until a future generation has to think back to the Greek when they will be asked to write the meaning of it on a whiteboard.

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