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How democratic is the UK?

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Introduction

´╗┐How democratic is the UK? A democratic country aims to have an accountable government that serve the best interests of the people it is governing. Democracy falls into numerous categories and comes in many different forms. When power is in the hands of the population as a whole and political decisions are made themselves, this is known as Direct Democracy. A present day example of this in the UK is a referendum. Another type is Representative Democracy. In this case, citizens will elect representatives to make decisions for them and the responsibility is handed over to the representative to make decisions for the country. Liberal democracies are today known as representative democracies and the representatives are accountable to the electorate. The UK is a liberal democracy which ensures that all citizens should be able to influence governmental decisions made. But how democratic is the UK? ...read more.

Middle

A way in which the UK is very democratic is the freedom of information that is permitted in the country. The media is free to publish any views that it wants and people are allowed a complete freedom of expression. Different political views are freely expressed and anyone is allowed to form a political party. The government is also allowed to be criticised for any political decisions it makes. An example of our freedom to information is the Freedom of Information Act 2000. One of the freedoms of the act that is stated is that any member of the public is able to write to the government asking any question and receive an answer. The only real limitation of freedom of press in the UK is during times of national security or warfare where some information may be censored from the media, however is can be argued that although it is undemocratic, it is necessary for the safety of the country. ...read more.

Conclusion

This enables the government to change policies and pass laws much easier than they could if the constitution was entrenched, however it can be argued that this makes us a more democratic country than one that is bound by a constitution because it makes us more flexible to change. It is also evident that the House of Lords and the Monarchy are unelected, and therefore there are people in power making decisions for the entire country that we as citizens have not elected to make decisions for us. In conclusion we can see that the UK has many democratic and undemocratic features, which makes it hard to determine how democratic the UK actually is. It seems that even some of the democratic features are undemocratic. For example free and fair elections aren?t actually that democratic because the election system that we use in the UK is undemocratic. I think that overall the UK isn?t as democratic as it could be the undemocratic features seem to outweigh the democratic features. ...read more.

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