I like big arguments!
Which is why millions of Americans aren't taking to the streets and tossing tear gas back at the cops.
Democracies can be every bit as oppressive as the worst dictatorships -but throw in that magical "representation" variable, and suddenly you silence almost all reaction.
E.g. a policeman beating you up in a dictatorship == unfree oppression, harsh repression etc.
The very same policeman beating you up just as badly in a democratic country == he's merely enforcing the laws that the majority wants and voted for (including, perhaps, yourself).
A less violent example:
A feudal lord taxing you at a whim == slavery, subjugation and serfdom.
A democratic government overtaxing you at a whim == simply enforcing the economic measures you voted for by electing them.
The implication being that since you're involved in the electoral process, no matter how little, your protests automatically mean nothing (though you have the right to protest...unless you also "voted" against that!) since you too are responsible for those laws being passed, and thus you will have to bear with them down to the bitter end. Suck it down.
With that "representation" story, you can turn almost any protest against the protesters, claiming that it makes no sense to protest against their own policies -which they agreed to by voting for X or for Y.
Kontra Kommando said:
Well, it's also because it's really not that bad here for the most part. Granted, places like Detroit rival cities in Afghanistan in terms of violent crimes and murder. But for the most part, it's not bad. All of the immigrants I talk to say the same, about how much better it is than the 3rd world shit holes they came from. One of my Indian friends, who was born dirt poor in India, is now upper-middle class here. He always expresses how thankful he is to be in the US.
The main difference between the US and their own country is not so much the form of goverment, but other indexes such as economic freedom, equality of opportunity etc. In theory, nothing prevents e.g. an Islamic Khaliffate or an African/Latin American dictatorship to offer the same opportunities and economic freedoms to its citizens as the USA, but in practice that's quite unlikely to happen. Even when politically stable, such regimes tend to be highly theocratic, nepotistic, clientelistic and corrupt, only really being "OK" for the ruling elites and maybe a privileged class of bureaucrats hiding behind red tape.
When people wish for "democracy" in such regimes, the main premise is that somehow election will destroy this stale status quo and allow the poor/the underprivileges to vote their way to equality. In practice, this has never happened, if post-communist countries, most Arab, African & Latin American countries and even Greece are any indication: elections just place a new corrupt elite in power (but this time, with the legitimacy of the popular vote).
Last edited by Maes on 06-24-13 at 18:53