DEMOCRACY

 

DEVELOPING FOR THE BENEFIT OF HUMANITY

 

Time magazine did not do it, so it is up to PV Style to announce the top person or entity of the millennium? Actually we are in the last year of the millennium. Let us not be misled by the Media Hypers. To them, hello! : January the first 2001 is the start of the third millennium. Perhaps it was not a person but a group of people, who qualify for the most important entity of the second millennium.

 

The 13th. century English barons, led the church leaders, knights and the lowly villeins in a revolt against King John. They forced him to sign The Magna Carta ( The Great Charter). The first democratic document  in the history of the human race? Thereby the role of tyrannical kings and other despots bad behavior  was diminished. Although it may take more than a thousand years for democracy to take effect all over the world, it is happening more and more. As an example, observe the countries of the old Soviet Union.

 

The English barons forbade taxation without representation in parliament. No longer was the king able to extort funds and armies from the populace without any control. They established that the power of a king is not  absolute.

 

After hundreds of years, amendments and wars over principles, including  The  American  Revolution against the policies of a later British king, King George the Third, we have the wonderful, conditioned freedom called democracy! With all its mostly good and a few bad attendant liberties. The best mutual living conditions that humans have yet devised. The ideal government , theorised  by the ancient Greeks and practiced increasingly by many modern nations – democracy!

 

Despite  George Orwell's predictions of The Big Brother entity, democracy is working, he did not know how much the Internet would allow the people of the world to communicate and talk about freedoms and democratic principles, to guard against future King Johns’.

Later, King John appealed to The Pope, saying he was coerced into signing away his rights and The Pope released him from his promises. However, the king died shortly after this and Magna Carta was reinstated under his successor, King Henry the Third. 

 

Out of Magna Carta arose subjugated English peoples’ rights to common lands, where they could graze their domestic animals, gather fruits and nuts, furniture making materials and firewood, all for free. Although today, the common lands that remain, have environmental controls and abuse protections. American national parks are similar in many ways, preserved and protected for the use of the people.

 

Inspired by Magna Carta  came trial by jury, habeas corpus and other fundamental legal rights for the people. T he current British monarch, Queen Elizabeth, has no power over her subjects and her government. Parliament merely reports to her regularly by the Prime Minister in person, then she has the opportunity to comment or even criticize government proceedings. However, as this meeting is extremely private, no one else knows her reactions or observations.

 

In theory, The Queen is expected, in extreme circumstances to make the barons and people aware of any government plans which are against the interests of her subjects. Perhaps if they could see her as outspoken and positive, they would become aware of her contributions to society in general and support the monarchy. In the next millennium the British monarchy may lose even more of its influence, because many British people are uncertain of the necessity for the Royals. Although, it is interesting that Australia has recently voted to retain her as their Head of State.

 

Also, in line with constant evolution of Magna Carta for the British people and their democracy, the hereditary barons whose ancestors started it all, are currently being removed from the House of Lords. Which is equivalent to the American Senate except the members are not elected by the people. Only barons, lords, earls and viscounts, presented with these titles in their lifetime, will, in future, be allowed to sit in ‘The Lords’.

 

Democracy allows democratically based nations to talk to each other rationally without major conflict. Democracy is the meeting point where astronauts of democratic nations may cohabit and work together for a common goal. Democracy means that people through representation have their grievances righted and aspirations realised. So! it fails to work perfectly sometimes, we dare not practice the alternative. Hopefully, our mutual world will proceed to and through the next millennium with even greater adherence to principles of democracy.

 

 

Ben Dunk,

Dunk Antiques and Restoration,

23946 Hawthorne Blvd.,

Torrance, CA 90505.