A dark day for democracy

I don’t normally blog about politics per se but in the current climate and the thought processes behind this article, I thought it was very relevant for education and society.

Pinkie Brown

The ‘United’ Kingdom has voted to leave the European Union by a margin of roughly 4%. After approximately 40 years of involvement in the European project, the UK will now plot its own course into uncharted waters.

Some are hailing this decision as a victory for democracy – the people of the UK taking back control of their destiny not just from the EU but also from the domestic political classes. They see a popular referendum as the very epitome of democracy, and feel that the turnout of around 72% represents a step-change in political engagement in the UK. But this is problematic on a few levels…

Firstly, ‘democracy’ is a misnomer for what we have just witnessed. Pure (i.e. Athenian) democracy was not just a case of the citizenry (demos) voting on political issues with the majority carrying the day. Nor was it the domain of people who kept their…

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