Democracy, put simply, is by and for the people. It’s about citizenship and caring about our communities. It’s about power – our collective power to vote, to choose our own fate as a people, nation, and world, to stand up and give hope to the invaluable worth of people. It’s about the rule of law, to ensure all people are socially equal (no class system sanctioned by law), politically equal (not denied rights unless by due process of law), legally equal (equals before the law), and economically equal (this strengthens both political and social equality). It’s about responsibility because with this kind of power comes the ultimate responsibility to ensure its existence. If we, as a people, are to benefit the from the protection of our rights, freedoms, and the rule of law as granted in a democratic society, we must uphold our responsibility as active participants, not spectators.

Our responsibility in a democratic society includes ensuring that no citizen feel powerless, unheard, or undervalued. However, as many people don’t seem to understand, it is also our responsibility as citizens and proponents of democracy to find this power in ourselves and others. It is our responsibility to give our own voice and to give voice to others who uplift and stand for what is right and just. It is our responsibility to give value to their worth. We, as citizens (not spectators) must uphold these responsibilities to build communities of service and a nation of character. For there’s nothing more important in a democracy than that which enhances the dignity of its citizens.

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