Democracy in Action ?
The basic premiss of a democracy is the populous decide the values of the country. Either directly or through elected representatives, the people participate in the proposal, development and creation of laws. These laws are designed safeguard the population from criminal activity and to encompass social, economic and cultural conditions that enable free and equal participation in political self determination.These laws are then administered equally to all citizens through a impartial criminal justice system. Typically this is achieved through free and fair elections where candidates set out there views in a manifesto and seek election to a government. In a working democracy when the elected members vote to create laws there decision will reflect the opinions of there constituents, as the elected members will have included there views on most emotive issues in there manifesto. Occasionally there will be issues where the elected member has to vote on a law that was not included in the manifesto. As they have not been elected with a recognized view on these issues it is then necessary for the elected member to remember when they cast there vote yea or nigh, it is not there opinion that they are giving but the opinion of the people who elected them. To determine which way they should vote it is imperative that they consult there constituents. If the elected members omit to do this the democracy fails at that point.
On the 6th February 2013 Naomi Long representing the constituency of East Belfast voted in favor of changing the law and introducing Gay Marriage. This is indeed a emotive issue, and one that was not covered in the members manifesto. The only indication i could find regarding this issue is that she is listed as a committee member of Bloomfield Presbyterian Church, a organization opposed to the introduction of this legalization and therefor it is reasonable to assume the East Belfast Vote would, in the absence of any clear procedure to ascertain the opinion of the people who elected her would have been to reject the change in the law. This however would have been wrong. When acting as the member of parliament it is the opinion of the people who elected you that must be considered. I would also believe it reasonable to assume that the connection with the church rules out the use of crystal balls, rune stones, remote reading, telepathy and any other non christian method to fathom the opinion of the constituency. So i pose this question. In who’s name did Naomi Long cast her vote ? what precautions did she put in place to insure the democratic process ? If the answer to that question is “none” it is my opinion you Naomi Long misrepresented her constituents.
I do not believe this attitude among elected members of parliament is unique. I would therefore call upon any person living within a democracy to exorcise there rights. If at any time you think the person representing you has made a decision without giving due regard to your opinion tell them directly. Write a letter, not a e mail, a letter. There is a certain effect that opening a envelope and reading of paper that is not present with reading off a computer screen. Every person has a voice, we have just forgotten how to use it. The alternative to expressing your opinion is elected representatives will continue to misuse the position of power you have placed them in. Remember, your view is as valid as any other persons within society, democracy provides for that. We as a democratic society seam to have been sleepwalking, moving along with out daily tasks not noticing that this so called democracy has became a jungle, and in the wild, the child that cry‘s the loudest normally gets ! People It is time to start screaming !