Participation in American Democracy

For a great number of citizens around the world democracy may mean what teachers taught them in history class or being able to get the chance to vote. However, democracy is something were all in control of and being able to have that freedom to impact your own life in various ways is significant. Democracy is the opportunity to use that freedom and make your own decisions, good or bad, espicially when it comes down to voting for a specific represantive for our country.

Nonetheless, voting is just one of the few ways citizens can participate in democracy and be apart of the democratic process. Which brings me to these three questions : “What are some of the ways in which Americans are mobilized into political action? What types of groups and organizations are most important in facilitating political participation? What factors and conditions determine which citizens are more likely to participate in political life”?

Furthermore, Americans are able to politically maneuver in ways such as: simply having a politcal converstaion wtih someone, lobbying for a specific law, displaying your passion for a certain interest through boyotting and marching, all of which are examples of democracy.

Some arrangement of participation are more familiar than others and there are American citizens who participate in democratic actions more than others as well. Recently, voting in particular is a grand example of how citizens don’t take advantage of that opportunity and use that action to express their democratic figure of speech. When a great number of citizens come together and elect its representatives, it guarantees the idea that we control ourselves by free choice.

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An individual’s right to vote ties that person to our social order, even if that person chooses not to exercise that right.

However, there are different ways a citizen may decide how to vote; prospective voting and retrospective voting. Retrospective voters base their voting decisoins on reactions to past performance; approving the status quo or signaling a desire for change & prospective voting is basing voting decision on well- informed opinons and consideration of the future consequences of a given vote. Both perspectives play a role when it comes down time for election day. Voting represents the American citizens new beginning, everything else in our democracy follows the right to vote. Participation is more than just a benefit, it’s a solid honor of our democracy.

Lobbying and protesting both play a huge role when it comes to down to politcs and their influence on the government. There are in fact, lobyist, and their role in politics is to influence represtatives or play any role on different levels of goverment. Lobbying may be looked at as a type of corruption; nonetheless lobbyist get paid to do so as different interest groups may invest their moeny onto people to take on that duty of lobbying. Additionally, protesting and lobbying both have the same primary goal and that is to influence the governemnt in some way. However, protesting can be expressed in many ways such as: chanting, unanticiapted actions, and even protest politically,

Additoinally, there are hundreds of interest groups in the U.S and all of them have the same goal, influence a certain politician or public official on a certain issue. Nevertheless, some interest groups are more influencial than others; some of the most impactful groups are the AMA, AARP, and NRA. The AARP (American Association of Retired Persons) plays a big role on politics, according to Tim Carney, “AARP enrolls anyone over age 50 as a member, which is why the group changed its name and why it has 39 million members. For a low annual membership fee of $16.” With the AARP’s great number of members, politicians take note of the groups issues and know if they can get this group on their iside they’ll have a great number of votes coming in for them when election time comes around. Not to mention, the AMA (American Medical Association) who are known for their support for Republicans and their great amount of money they put into lobbying. According to (“Open Secrets”, 2018) they have spent over fifteen million dollars for lobbying in the year of 2018.

Additionally, the AMA is also one of the most impactful groups, holding over five million members at the moment. According to (“Open Secrets”, 2018) “The association has traditionally supported Republican candidates, agreeing with the such issues as medical practice .” Which is a huge impact on represantitves who are of the republican party, ensuring them great number of votes coming their way from just one interest group. Interest groups have the ability to influence the any policy in their favorable direction.

Moreover, there are different factors that go into what and how people get into th political life. Outiside of voting and protesting, a major topic that has been low of participation from citizens has been voting. Voter participation remains low, and communities of color and poor communities are largely ruled out from the political process. In fact, the only time the U.S has had anything near full participation was when only “white men” could vote. Ethan Frey stated, “Voter turnout declined from 79 percent of the eligible voting age population in 1896 to just 49 percent in 1920, when women gained the right to vote.” In the South, voter turnout began a large decline after the withdrawal of troops in 1877. Also, recently in the last presidential election there was a huge gap in the age difference of who voted, & primarly “elderly men and women” played a hge role in the elction.

In conclusion, democracy is something were all abot to have in our control, and having that power to manipulate your freedom is something citizens should control of and being able to have that freedom to impact your own life in various ways is significant. Democracy is the opportunity to use that freedom and make your own decisions, good or bad, espicially when it comes down to voting for a specific represantive for our country.

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Participation in American Democracy. (2022, Apr 26). Retrieved from

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