Tutorial: Pause III. Your Sense of Democracy
You will realize, if you live long enough, when you are born in a democracy you don’t have the option of being indifferent to your government. Cynicism about governance, well founded as it may seem, is forsaking responsibility, giving up, and an implicit endorsement of the violence of kings and dictators. Our democracy requires you assume the responsibility of the vote and to engage the effort to empower your values. You hold as a birthright the right and responsibility to empower your public self.
The vote is the singular nonviolent unit of power. What is your Sense of Democracy as your authority evolves through the previous pauses of person and community? What are your values as a public person?
If you live in this democracy, the social contract declares the majority vote achieves the right to govern for a given election cycle. The minority tolerates while it strives to bring forward to the next election cycle its own majority. Our private realm, Pauses I and II are intended to be protected by the Bill of Rights and Public Law. Our public selves are obligated to do the work of the citizen in a democracy and accomplish our goals within the framework of the Constitution. To work in conflict with the Constitution can be civil disobedience which carries heavy consequences. Pause III is to help you be very certain of your Sense of Democracy and your relationship to rule of law so you can discharge your inherited responsibility as a public person. Some of your daily decisions, particularly in your work, will likely have a direct relationship to your Sense of Democracy.
From President Lincoln
Thanks to JAMELLE BOUIE for referencing Abraham Lincoln’s first inaugural address in the New York Times on September 9, 2022. I would like to share with you the quote from his article directly taken from the record of Lincoln’s address.
“A majority held in restraint by constitutional checks and limitations, and always changing easily with deliberate changes of popular opinions and sentiments, is the only true sovereign of a free people,” he said. “Whoever rejects it does of necessity fly to anarchy or to despotism.”
I often wonder if we aren’t living in an era more similar to Lincoln’s than we care to admit.
The Construction Sites. Building Good
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Click on “My Sense of Democracy Instructions and Worksheet