Is Democracy the Only Legitimate Form of Government?

Topics: Democracy, Government, United States Pages: 3 (902 words) Published: May 9, 2013
1. Evaluate the view that democracy is the only legitimate form of government

A legitimate state can be defined as “A state in which its citizens have little or no significant resistance to the public policy and leadership of the state in question due to the rightful/legitimate exercise of power.” This Legitimacy of state is often a hard term to apply to any form of government in the modern political world due to the very differing cultures between the western and eastern world. However the general consensus of many political leaders is democracy is the only truly legitimate way of ruling any state. Democracy in the words of Abraham Lincoln is a government formed “of the people, by the people, for the people” where the power of ruling the country is put directly in the hands of its citizens who elect representatives to lead them in the forefront of the country’s governmental systems.

I feel that Democracy truly is not the only legitimate form of government. True democracy where the voice of the people counts for every decision in the ruling of the country is almost certainly unattainable for every country. Take for example the United States of America arguably the most democratic nation in the world. In order for the United States to be wholly democratic the USA would have to put out every decision in terms of the country’s ruling to a national vote with every citizen regardless of Age, Gender, Social status etc having an equal say in every decision regardless of importance. We can understand that this is practically unattainable in any modern democracy and therefore democracy is now regarded as the selection of representatives to carry out our interests in government. I believe therefore that this makes Democracy less legitimate as the power is not rightfully exercised among all citizens. However I do note that legitimacy must not be confused with the viability or practicality of a political system and therefore Democracy does remain legitimate in its...
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