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What About American Democracy?

Popularity 5Viewed 7575 times 2016-5-27 06:15 |System category:Life| democracy, American, competition, English

Recently, one of our English Club members contacted me and told me that she had entered an English speech competition. She had made it into the finalists and wanted my help in getting support for the popular vote. Of course I was happy to help her and hopefully she could win the competition.

Another member wrote a message on my Moments (Circle of Friends) in WeChat (weixin) scolding me for allowing her to use her 'relationship' (guanxi) with me to help her win. She suggested that she should not use 'relationships', but, instead, she should win the competition on her own merit. She also praised the American democratic way and said that I was going against my own principles as an American and that it wasn't fair for her to get votes based upon my request for all of our members to go and vote for her. 

I discovered later that the girl who scolded me and attempted to cause me to lose face by scolding me and calling me out on my post asking for votes, was in fact only jealous of the girl who had entered the competition. Regardless, I felt that I needed to explain something about the way that we Americans engage in the democratic process of voting. 

Let me explain.

I think nearly everyone knows that there are only two political parties of any significance in the USA. There are more than two, but others aren't very significant. Each party chooses their candidate to enter into the competition (run for) for president. However, before they choose their candidate, there are many who want to be chosen as their party's candidate. When the time comes that one of the them is about to be chosen, the one that is chosen wants an endorsement (support) from the others who were before, his/her competitors. They want their support because the others, though they weren't chosen as the party's candidate, still have a lot of influence and can help the final candidate get more votes. This is the process in the most important thing that we do in American democracy. That is, in choosing a president.

This English competition was set up in the same way. There were several finalists or candidates. One of them will be chosen by popular vote. Our member wanted my help in getting more votes so that she could win. There is nothing different about what she wanted in comparison to our American democratic process of choosing a president. The president is chosen by popular vote.

A different kind of competition is the kind where judges are the only ones allowed to vote and choose a winner. For example, like the Voice of China. The judges decide who will win. It is not dependent upon popular vote. However, the English speech competition was set up as a popular vote competition. No different than the American process of electing a President.

Like I said, it turned out that the girl who had scolded me and boldly stated that I was going against the 'fair' process, was only jealous of the girl in the competition. She also knew nothing about American democracy and the way that we vote. She later argued more about the situation and finally stated that I wouldn't be 'fit' to be her teacher. HA! HA! She was right about that. I don't think she could be taught anything when she wouldn't even listen to facts. She just hated being wrong. In fact, it would be quite unfair if a competitor was denied the right to ask for more votes. All of the others in the competition would have that opportunity. If one is denied that chance, it wouldn't be fair.

(Opinions of the writer in this blog don't represent those of China Daily.)


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Comment Comment (6 comments)

Reply Report voice_cd 2016-5-27 08:50
Thank you very much!!! we have highlighted your blog.
Reply Report fenglong747 2016-5-27 11:16
I agree with your oppinions.
Reply Report samlam 2016-5-29 09:56
Democracy can be done from little things like voting in a class, discussion in a group, sharing different ideas in a family. Students should have more knowledge about it.
Reply Report PatrickInBeijin 2016-5-30 10:53
Of course if the election doesn't involve large sums of money and advertising, and is missing corporate donors and super pacs (trying to buy the election for wealthy donors), it isn't democracy anyway.  It's just an election.  LOL.
Reply Report Donald_Trump 2016-6-1 14:34
One of the most important things that we do in American democracy, that is, we can choose our President.

Michael, you must be one heck of a great lecturer to these kids!  
I like your, 'to the point-not bias approach' which defiantly shows you're an educated educator and its apparent on this blogs topic. Unlike the teamkre blog, whom I kindly egged for her bias, uneducated personal smear.....
Reply Report MichaelM 2016-6-1 15:26
Donald_Trump: One of the most important things that we do in American democracy, that is, we can choose our President.

Michael, you must be one heck of a great le ...
Thank you for your kind comments.

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MichaelM

Michael is the author of the transformational book, Powerful Attitudes. He is a professional educator, an educational consultant, an author. He lives in Zhengzhou, Henan Province. He enjoys playing guitar and writing poetry. He loves China.

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