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October 10, 2015 / 27 Tishri, 5776
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Democracy is Not the Answer

The argument that democracy had made the Muslim world dysfunctional was always chancy.

Democracy only represents a choice. It does not obligate us to honor the choice of another people, especially if that choice is elementally hostile to us.

What our policymakers have forgotten is that the only democratic choices that they are obligated to honor are those made by their voters. And it is the safety, security and future of those voters that they are obligated to safeguard.

Democracy was once viewed, rightly or wrongly, as a form of American Exceptionalism. But reducing that exceptionalism to open elections misses the point. It isn’t open elections that make Americans special; it’s Americans who make open elections special. Instead of looking to systems, we should look to values. Instead of looking to governments, we should look to peoples.

The belief that we are meant to export democracy is a Cold War relic and the assumption that exporting democracy also exports our values is clearly wrong. It isn’t democracy that makes free people; it’s individual responsibility. Democracy with individual responsibility makes for a free nation. Democracy without individual responsibility is only another name for tyranny.

We have spent too much time looking at systems, when we should have been looking at values. We have wrongly assumed that all religions and all peoples share the same basic values that democracy can unleash for the betterment of all. That has clearly been proven to be wrong. If we had looked instead at a poll which showed that 4 out of 5 Egyptians believe that adulterers should be stoned and thieves should have their hands cut off, we would have known how this democracy experiment was going to end and how much damage it would do to our national interests.

It’s time to stop putting our faith in Democracy. Democracy for all is not the answer. Responsibility for all is. Our responsibility is not to agnostically empower other people to make the choices that will destroy our way of life, but to make those choices that will keep our way of life alive.

Originally published at Sultan Knish.

About the Author: Daniel Greenfield is an Israeli born blogger and columnist, and a Shillman Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. His work covers American, European and Israeli politics as well as the War on Terror. His writing can be found at http://sultanknish.blogspot.com/ These opinions do not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Jewish Press.

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5 Responses to “Democracy is Not the Answer”

  1. Charlie Hall says:

    "It’s time to stop putting our faith in Democracy. Democracy for all is not the answer. Responsibility for all is."

    Precisely the argument European fascists made in the 1930s.

    To paraphrase Winston Churchill, democracy is the worst form of government, except for all the others.

  2. Zachary Kessin says:

    I always liked the Al Smith quote… "The Cure for the ills of Democracy is More Democracy"

  3. Hazel Armstrong says:

    You appear to have missed the point. Democracy is a western hemisphere concept based on Enlightenment values which conceived principles of universal education, rational thinking and individual responsibilities based on those teachings. It is not a 'cure all' for illiterate, poverty-stricken, corrupt, tyrannical societies indoctrinated in barbaric, 7th century, absolutism i.e. Islam is destined to rule the world by either conversion or elimination of the Infidel and Greenfield's analysis is accurate in its overview of Jew.

    Are you seriously suggesting that, it is a good idea for western nations to financially support states openly dedicated by word and deed to the genocide of Judaeo/Christian society? That logic is now a "fascist" principle? That Churchill would have supported the insanity of Western appeasement of Islamism?

    "How dreadful are the curses which Mohammedanism lays on its votaries! Besides the fanatical frenzy, which is as dangerous in a man as hydrophobia in a dog, there is this fearful fatalistic apathy. The effects are apparent in many countries. Improvident habits, slovenly systems of agriculture, sluggish methods of commerce, and insecurity of property exist wherever the followers of the Prophet rule or live. A degraded sensualism deprives this life of its grace and refinement; the next of its dignity and sanctity. The fact that in Mohammedan law every woman must belong to some man as his absolute property – either as a child, a wife, or a concubine – must delay the final extinction of slavery until the faith of Islam has ceased to be a great power among men. … No stronger retrograde force exists in the world. Far from being moribund, Mohammedanism is a militant and proselytizing faith. It has already spread throughout Central Africa, raising fearless warriors at every step; and were it not that Christianity is sheltered in the strong arms of science, the science against which it had vainly struggled, the civilisation of modern Europe might fall, as fell the civilisation of ancient Rome.
    (Winston Churchill)

  4. Charlie Hall says:

    "Islam is destined to rule the world by either conversion or elimination of the Infidel "

    Christianity has made similar claims.

    "Judaeo/Christian society"

    There is no "Judaeo-Christian" anything. Rabbinic Judaism has much more in common with Sunni Islam than with any Christian movement.

    '"fascist" principle'

    Fascism, Nazism, and Communism did not arise out of the Muslim world.

  5. Mildred Bilt says:

    Anybody out there ready to define democracy? No descriptions please-definition only. As a post script-where does democracy exist today? for Charlie Hall; Aristotle said that democracy is the best form of government except that it doesn't work. To grasp that fully, read the history of the implementation of democracy in Athens. It's a comic litany and was tossed as fast as possible. Totally simplistic.

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