Wednesday, November 16, 2005

The Price of Democracy

"The price of democracy is eternal vigilance," our founding father Thomas Jefferson once said. I was reminded of this by an email from my mother-in-law Elena Schmid in response to my previous post, We Need a National Conversation.

With permission, I repeat Elena's email:

Democracy is never a given. Each generation has to renew its commitment to it, has to decide whether it is worth the effort. My generation had a number of issues it had to fight for - social equality, civil rights, unnecessary wars: yours will have to take on a move toward autocracy imposed by limiting dissent: your daughter's will probably be around technology's rights and privileges. Democracy is 'of the people' and the people have to decide what the breathe and depth of that democracy will be at any given time. It is a challenging system of government that does not allow for somnambulism if it is to survive. That's why freedom of speech (including blogs) and freedom of the press is so important.

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