From the editor: 9 June 2022


One of the many joys of living in New Zealand is that it is a democracy.

A simple definition of democracy is government by the people, or rather a government in which the supreme power is vested in the people, and exercised by them directly or indirectly through a system of representation, usually involving periodically held free elections.

Closely linked to the merit of democratic government is the prevention of abuse of political power. Political dictatorship should never happen, human rights should be protected, and people should have freedom of speech so long as the latter is morally responsible.

Democracy does slow decision-making while various relevant parties are consulted, yet that’s a small price to pay.

At the end of the day, if the people don’t like something, they can work to change it, unlike in Russia where autocracy leaves the people with little or no choice.
choice. The Russia/Ukraine conflict is an example of autocracy trying to take over democracy, and much of the civilised world is quite rightly reacting with abhorrence.

The people of Russia could make a stand (they’ve done it before, wiping out their autocratic monarchy), but it’s highly unlikely they’ll take a stand against Vladimir Putin.

Situations like this should make us even more grateful for New Zealand’s democracy, and make the most of it. Speak out, seek change and take action against perceived wrongs. And don’t take it for granted.

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