Although not a direct democracy, the United States has successfully solved the many enduring issues that face any democracy. These issues are numerous and range from political equality all the way to rights and responsibilities of citizens. Although there are many concerns to confront, democracy is still the most preferable form of government. Niccolo Machiavelli said, "Government by the populace is better than government by the princes.” (p.15).
The first issue that a democracy must deal with is who is eligible for citizenship. In ancient Greece a citizen was any free adult male who could fight. This didn't include women, slaves, or the crippled. I agree with Thomas Jefferson when he wrote in the Declaration of Independence, "all men are created equal.” (p.101) Men and women, old or young, should not be denied citizenship. The next issue that faces a democracy is Representation and Participation. How are people represented fairly, and how can they participate in the government? The next issue includes how laws are made and how easily they can be changed. This procedure is found in the beginning of the Constitution. The fourth issue includes the rights and responsibilities of the citizens. In the United States, the rights of the people can be found in the Bill of Rights. (p.118,119) The next issue that is always present in a democracy is the fear of tyranny, or the fear that one person will have all the power as in an absolute monarchy. In 1690 John Locke spoke of an absolute monarchy by saying, "Hence it is evident, that absolute monarchy, which by some men is counted the only government in the world, is indeed inconsistent with civil society, and so can be no form of civil society at all.” (p.39) Another fear that is present in democracies is the fear of factions, or the fear that one group will rise to influence some aspect of the government. In the US, people are part of so many factions that it would be nearly impossible to find just one that would gain enough support to significantly influence the government.