Government and Democracy in the U.S.

The United States is a representative democracy, which means that the citizens elect the government. The democracy in the United States formed with the 13 colonies and the very first constitution written in the confined small space in top secrecy. It may not be the best form of government, but many believe it to be the best out of all the ones that exist today or have existed in the past.

Power of Democracy

Democracy gives the power to the people. This concept was very important for the initial settlers of the New World. They wanted to free themselves from the rules and dogmas of the church and the monarchy. This is the solution they found. Even though the constitution, the main document supporting the democracy, was in 1788, it is still an active legislative document today. Considering that the document was written over 200 years ago and thus required only 27 amendments, it shows just how well thought out the initial version was. Many future constitutions of other countries were based on the US constitution, which is the oldest constitution in the world.

However, years have gone by since the initial creation of the constitution and many believe that it needs to be updated to better reflect the modern world. Currently the world is experiencing some stress on democracy, so it is one of the most burning issues for Americans as well.

Among the most burning issues of the last year was the discussing about the constitutional right to bear arms. This was initially created to help the citizens feel protected in the New World which they were still trying to understand and adapt to their needs. However, the modern world has changed drastically and many argue that most do not need to own guns. Every school shooting and the deaths that follow serve as additional arguments for this update to the constitution. Yet changing a document which is over 200 years old is no small feat and not everyone ready to agree to make the required changes, even if they are just creating a more difficult process of obtaining lethal weapons. After all, children are dying because of a document written so long ago.

Pew Research Center Analysis

General statistics based on the researches of the Pew Research Center shows that Americans are mostly satisfied with how democracy is operating in their country, while there’s a significant part of the nation that says that the U.S. economy could work better and many things must be done in this direction.

In comparison with Democrats, Republicans in the United States generally agree that democracy requires some fundamental modifications. They also believe the political system of the United States to be far better than in many other developed countries of the world.

According to the latest survey, six out of ten citizens of the United States think that they live in the country where democracy is working at a satisfactory level. The other 40% spread out their votes from believes that the democracy needs much improvement to believing it words really well.

Six out of ten Americans, which is about 61% of the whole nation, would want to see considerable development in the country’s democracy and the structure of the government. Other 39% are more satisfied with the way democracy is running in the country and do not think that the current government needs any changes. It is safe to save that this percentage may differ from one presidency to the next.

An interesting fact is that people who are more involved in the process of political issues are less likely to say that democracy requires changes, while those who are talking about changes are less involved in any political processes. However, the recent presidential elections have gotten a lot more people involved in the political process.

Such gaps in opinions are also observed between the groups of people with different skin colors and of different ages.

Only 54 % of white people say that it is necessary to change the government, over 70% of black people as well as 76% of Hispanics would change it significantly.

Those who are younger than 50 (about 66%) say the existing structure and government needs to change, while 50-plus year old people (about 58%) think differently. Both groups, however, have no significant discrepancy about how democracy is working in the country.

Taking into account the opinions of demographic groups, one may conclude that there are no extensive differences in the opinions on whether democracy is working well enough. However, they have disparate opinions on the functioning of government. The similar opinion is observed between educational groups, where people see eye to eye as to how the democracy is working. Nevertheless, there are differences between people of various degrees – 65% of those without a college degrees do find the changes in the government necessary, while 54% of those with a college degree have another opinion.