Open Questions about Democracy in a Pandemic
It’s funny isn’t it? There are so many different things happening right now in this COVID-19 crisis. A lot of countries are being bombarded with problems they never imagined having.
Some of these problems are because of broken healthcare systems or questionable laws. I won’t go into details about this, but there are a lot of things happening right now which question the functionality of a democracy.
So instead of writing one of those pro/con articles, I thought it would be interesting to ask 10 questions about Democracy in a Pandemic. I’ll add my thoughts to why I choose that question below each one.
Do we really have a vote in this?
I don't want to go into specifics. I know there are people with all kinds of theories. From blaming bats to swearing that the virus was created in a lab.
But what I really want to go into is, if we as citizens still have the democratic right most of our nations are build on? We see leaders and presidents deciding without asking the nation what they truly want!
You can't argue to question if we still have a vote in this! Let's see what the future holds in store...
How much freedom does the press really have?
Freedom of the Press is a fundamental right every media company and therefore journalist has. Whatever topic or event you cover, you write about with your best intentions. We're not in a Cold War and don't have to worry about censorship or control. (Well, in theory..)
But you see more and more Media Outlets who change their voice and tone of reporting. Is this because of a sudden strategy change or did someone tell them to do so? We'll probably never know.
Is democracy the same everywhere in the world?
You might read this sentence and ask yourself if I lost my mind! Before you judge me, think about it for a while. Most politicians do what they do because of the democracy. After all, in most political systems the people choose their represantives. I personally live in Switzerland and over here we have a half direct democracy, meaning we vote a politician into parliament.
Therefore they should represent the values and inquiries the people ask for. The represent the nations will. Now this is only a half direct democracy because we don't vote for every political office. Our Federal Council for example are not chosen by the people. They are chosen within each party. Those 7 people are mostly also the ones who decide what will happen in the near future.
Now, does the UK have the same democracy like Switzerland? Of course not! But in theory the democratic foundation should be the same everywhere. There is a nation, represented by people who choose individuals into office or parliament.
With all these changes and adaptations, you see each country solve their problems differently. Some of them try to stick to the democratic schedule, while others turn their power into dictatorship!
It's hard for a regular citizen if their rights are still taken seriously if a group of people decide over their heads. And don't give me that, “We can't vote” bullshit! We live in the 21. century! There a numbers of ways to vote digitally. Over the phone or camera for example!
This begs the question: If there are states who stick to the fundamental rights of democracy and others who turn into dictators, can we really count on it?
How long will this dilemma last?
I feel this article wouldn't be done, if I hadn't mentioned this question. Please remember, that I wrote this article in the first week of May 2020. So if this whole thing is over and you read it after the pandemic, treat this question like those annoying Facebook Moments Reminders.
This question is one many nations and leaders are trying to solve on a daily basis. For most businesses and individuals out there, the time can't come soon enough. Which I feel is the right strategy as well. And if you're on the other side, hear me out for a minute.
If we can achieve a herd immunity and fight this virus naturally, we can open more of these businesses. Not because we value money over lives, but we can actually support many of these local shops to come out positive of this crisis.
To conclude this article, I wanted to make sure that I didn't offend anyone. I know that these questions are very specific. Some of them are very open and provocative. But these are mostly the questions which result in interesting dialogs. Which I hope some of you will start. This at least is one more way to get through this together.