Saturday, February 5, 2011


We have all seen stories about Egypt. Many of us follow the situation through social media as I do. For example Twitter is full of tweets about Egypt. The more I read, the more I get annoyed of the attitudes of us, who live in western coutries. It seems that the biggest fear is, that the power is going to end up to islamists. It's sad, that we can speak of democracy and then say from outside, who would be the best to create that democracy and all in the same sentence.

Democracy is a process. We can't wrap it up and give it as a present and say, that you have to use this. It has been tried and every time it has failed to work. Democracy is born from within not from outside. People have to want it, because otherwise they won't be active citizens. The process from dictatorship or from very authoritarian system takes time and unfortunately many times it takes also victims. From outside we can support those, who work towards democracy, but we can't say, what kind of society they should create. We should listen more and respect other cultures and religions. If western counries have supported the worst dictators in the past and also in this very moment, it is hypocritical to lecture about democracy.

It would also be a perfect moment spend a little time to think, how democratic society we ourselves live. Has every citizen a true possibility to have an effect to our society or to the issues that touch his/her life? Do we have a system, that supports active citizenship? Do we have a culture, where we can freely speak of important issues and where we feel, that we are heard?

For example if the percentage of those, who vote in the major elections is falling rapidly, what is the level, when we can't anymore say, that we have a living democracy? It isn't enough, that we have a right to vote, we need a society, that supports active citizenship, open conversation, accepts diversity and appreciates it's citizens.

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