Group Homepage

The Ecology of Democracy, Chapter 6 - Your point of view - 2

Hello Everyone,

Our classroom discussions have centered on a chapter you were assigned from The Ecology of Democracy.

This is a gentle reminder that your posts and responses are due by Monday, November 27th by midnight. Keep in mind, you are to write a well thought-out, meaningful reflection paper about your group project  and respond to two of your classmates papers, for a minimum total of three posts.

Remember, we are interested in your original thoughts and ideas! This assignment is designed to get you to think critically and engage in a civil discussion with your classmates about the democratic process of problem solving as it relates to you in the classroom and in the community.

Please do not wait until the last minute; post early and often. Each post will be graded based on the quality of the content. Your post should cover some aspect of the chapter you are reading including the problem, process, program and projected outcome. Please use this link to enter the website http://ecologyofdemocracy.org/.

You will make your posts in the classroom conversations area; under the thread The Ecology of Democracy Your point of View-2. You can also receive up to 20 points extra credit by answering the thread question: How do you understand the role of citizens or the citizenry in a democracy?  If you have not registered, you will need to do so. Feel free to catch me in class or shoot me an email if you have any questions.

Best

Comments

UM Alali's picture

As Matthews advises, a lot of “zealots” may be totally absorbed by an issue. But unless people understand its implications, and are truly informed, actions can be as easily harmful as helpful. To further democracy through participating, it is advisable to determine values that stand above special interests, from my perspective. These are things critical to our collective well-being, as Matthews suggests (Ecology of Democracy, 69). Once these values are recognized, it is imperative to act “wisely” and not to remain uninformed. Being part of an ecology of democracy that works involves knowing more than just facts, however, and I agree that as Matthews recommends, it is vital to know context and pursue the right courses of action, or exercise sound judgment. The gaining of participation in an ecology of democracy demands real involvement, therefore, not just learning the basics and acting in an unthinking way.

UMAlmehdhar's picture

I think as long as you will be counted in the election and you will vote, you have to learn about politics. Even if you don't like it or you don't care about it. Politics tells you what's going on on the planet, your vote would be based on that thing,so you should learn about it. You can not just for someone because he told you he will do something. Your vote is so important, and could change many things. 

UMJACKSON's picture

The idea of democracy is a wonderful thing. My only problem is the way we go about it today. Now a days, people vote on who the soial media thinks is best. Instead of looking and researching the candidates platforms, and views for ourselves we tend to listen what everyone else has to say. Social media only shines light on the issues that causes a negative effects to people. People only get invovled on the issues that causes a negative effect. You have a voice and you should speak not only on the things that effect you but things that may effect your neighbor in a negative way. Some people don't have the voice to speak up for themselves. Everyone deserves equailty. 

UM Hachem's picture

I agree with you 100%. Today, people don't really make their own decisions and choices; they see what social media says about a person or leader, and they make their decision off of that. The presidential election of 2016 is a great example to support this idea. The internet and social media found the negative things about both Trump and Clinton and only talked about that. They didn't talk about the ideas the candidates had and how they will make America better. Many people made their vote based on what the social media was saying about the candidates instead of actually doing some research and learn which candidate would do goods things for America. 

Farah Hachem

UM Ahmed's picture

Yes! Some people never see the big picture. There is so much more to a candidate than what you see on social media, we just need to take the time to get to know them by doing our own research. We never see any good things happening on the news, its always negative and it brings more hate into people who all have a powerful voice. Everyone has a powerful voice, not just verbal voice but each person can make a big impact in anyway they may be comfortable with, they just need to find their niche. Great job!

UMAlmehdhar's picture

I don't think those who don't know anything about politics or don't care about it should involved in the election and vote. Or there should be another way to count their votes. Yesterday I read many reactions tweets on Twitter about Trumb winning. Many of these were about why should people who don't know anything about politics vote. Someone wrote a sarcastic tweet saying  voters should have been taken IQ exam. I actually agree with this point, that you must learn and know the basic of politics to know who to vote for not just vote for voting. it is your right to vote but also you must learn and vote based on something.  

UMalaskri's picture

Yes, I would agree with you that those who don't know anything about politics or don't care about it should involved in the election and vote because that would be good if he/she dosn't help for supoorting someone dosn't know. Their voice will help but we don't want it to affect the society or what the majpurity of people want. People whom have an idea about politics, they should go to read from a right sources in order to choose the right presedent or otherwise, they shouldn't vote to contribute for curraption. 

UMhachemhachem's picture

After reading chapter 6, it really explained in detail why citizens don't worry too much about political things and don't get more politically involved. Sources everywhere such as the t.v, the internet and more give out false information and different stories that don't add up to make sense. This is a perfect time to bring this up because the election just happened and the two candidates have done unprofessional things and they have said lies which lead to us believing that fake information is being fed to us and it brings us down as a country.

But we must understand as citizens in the U.S that things such as this are going to happen and need to make it known. Citizens don't think that their voices are being heard and that's exactly what chapter 6 explains to us.

UM lewis's picture

I do argee with your point on how you said that citizens don't think that their voices are being heard. Chapter 6 have a great way of breaking down what is happening (politically) in America in a very simple but thought out way. I also like the fact that you addressed on how the media feeds us lies but we have no choice but to believe them most times. 

Sh'Tara S Lewis

MMBorowicz's picture

I was interested in what the reading had to say about everyone having different life experiences and that affecting what we choose to value morally. I agree with this in the notion that people usually agree with their families' opinions on politics, religion, etc. It can be easier to follow along with others' opinions instead of checking the facts for ourselves and putting in the effort to develop our own thoughts, as well as deal with criticisms. Whether or not a person practices faith, their familial status, and traumatic experiences can shape who we are as people.

Hawra Almukhreq's picture

I like what you wrote and find it right. From childhood we see that parents are role models for us. When we grow up we do the same habits and traditions commensurate with our time.

UMJACKSON's picture

When I was growing up, is compelety different from when my grandmother or mother was growing. Everyone in the neighborhood knew you, if you did anything wrong your parents would find out in a quickness. When I was child, the only neighbors I knew was my friends parents. Neighborhoods back in the day was very close and friendly. They actually talked and cared about each other. That has huge impact on the election because you knew your neighbors struggle, you knew what will help and harm them. Today, we are to worried about being in competition with each other instead of helping each other get ahead.

UM Walker's picture

I agree with you, my mother told me the same thing and how eveyone in her neighborhood knew everyone and knew their grandparents and/or aunts and uncle and etc. and now, the world is so not friendly and it's rare when you run into a nice person that will genuinely not hurt you and/or anyone around you, the world is really different and it's sad to me.

Hawra Almukhreq's picture

you are right. Nowadays all people work for their-self only. Even if their close people need them. People have become selfish and jealous of each other. 

UMalaskri's picture

Often, we are trying to escape from the decisions and steps that might cause a real difference to the lives of all of us. Either out of fear of failure or loss of confidence or maybe, the failure of experience we have had in the past. In fact, the concepts vary from one person to another. According to many factors so it is for each one of us own his world and his vision that may narrow or widen, according to the facts of his circumstances and a genuine desire lurking in himself. 

MMBorowicz's picture

I agreed with the chapter when it advocated for more voter participation and less allowance for "sitting on the sidelines". I believe if a person has a political opinion, they should act upon it. Exercise the rights we have been granted! Every vote counts! Political activism in the form of rallies, protests, and campaigning are ways to make sure your voice is heard by people who may not have thought that way otherwise. If you find people who share the same values as you, working together can have an even bigger impact. If you encounter others who disagree with you, one person may be convinced by the other and inspired to look at things in a new light, if not you will at least become aware of how others think and will have opportunity to further research your opinions and develop a stronger argument for them.

UM Walker's picture

After reading Chapter 6, it was kind of an eye opener to me personally, especially when it explained about getting involved and how we should help the community and I believe this is true. Not a lot of people come back to help their community out and I believe as citizens we should come together and help a community that is in need and come up with ideas as well. Also in chapter 6, it talked about having two problems with Democracy in which it mentioned how some are put on the "sidelines of the political side" which I'm guessing this means not a lot of people to be apart of politics and not a lot of people really care about what's going on in the world, in which they should be. Chapter 6 honestly, related itself to everyday life and it related to certain situations that are happening today, which really broaden itself. The chapter also talked about how people that do not pay attention to politics won't see much connection what is valuable, this is very true from my stand point. I know some people that aren't really apart of politicals really do not know what the value of the person they're voting for are, especailly with the debate and the election between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump.

UM Hachem's picture

I agree with you about helping our communities. In my opinion, many citizens don't think to help their community because they believe that there are other people to do that. The way that I think about it is that the more people that volunteer and help out, the stronger and better the community will be. Also, I agree with the fact that people should start caring more about politics because politics is used to lead our country. For example, we choose a president to lead and strengthen our country. If we don't care too much about politics, we won't choose the right leader for our country, and everything will fall apart.

Farah Hachem

UM Walker's picture

Honestly, this world does not look at the value of what someone has. We can't just focus on who is good for what, we basically have to look at who is good for what world we live in. You have to look at someone's character and the way their actions are presented. Words do not mean anything to be honest, like the saying "actions speak louder than words" and this is true. I've been growing up with this saying all of my life and now that I am getting older, I noticed that this is true. People can tell you one thing but then their actions can prove that their words do not mean a thing. For instance, this election, the canidates promised they would do certain things but what if you get in office and you can't do it, you're going to look ridiculous, but I honestly do agree with Chapter 6 and some of the chapter was saying was a "eye opener" and it did relate to the world we are living in and it was very good to read and relate it to everyday life.

mquigly's picture

It is really sad on how we don’t appreciate each other for our characteristic and values we only find people and used them to our advantage. We use people to boost our lives up when we should be boosting others’ lives up to make ourselves feel better about helping others. Our views on each other are terrible and once you think about the whole thing it is truly disappointing in how we can’t appreciate someone unless they are useful in our lives. We have evolved into a conceded society that only an eye opening experience will be able to change everyone’s views. I have a hard time believing someone’s words. I always watch for people’s actions and reactions to certain situation in order to get to truly know a person. The election is a perfect example of this because they cannot do all the thing they promise us because it has to go through so many other people before anything happens and by the time that is over with it normally get knocked down or forgotten about. It is one of my biggest pet peeve about the election don’t promise me something you can not make come true.

UM Davidson's picture

I completely agree with you when talking about "actions speak louder than words." I have had many people in my life that say one thing but do the complete opposite thing. I think every election not just this one, there are candidates promising thigs that they cant give us. It makes it harder to trust people like this. Chapter 6 was an eye opener to a lot of things people keep their eyes shut to, and what we should know about the world we live in.

UMThorn's picture

When speaking about the "two problems of democracy" I too believe that many people just sit on the sidelines not wanting to get involved. Our society today has become full of bystanders who just sit by and let things happen. Many with the mindset of "It does not have an impact on me" so they just go along and let issues remain, while never trying to make an impact in society. Paired with that is just a lack of care, many people, mainly the younger generation simplely do not care enough to further educate themselves about politics, or with anything for that matter. We live in times where people do not dwell deeper on a topic. We take was given to us at a surface level and don't care to look more into it. This is the main cause of misimformed people in society. We have people writing in a dead gorrilla on voting ballots for president, manly simplely do not care for making well imformed decisions to better the place we live in.

UM Crane's picture

The story of the woman who started a grassroots campaign over something she had no data/realistic conclusions about really made me think about how often it actually happens. Maybe not to the extent of starting grassroot campaigns but you know what I'm talking about. People who read a blip of an article about something and rage on it for weeks even though they didn't think to read into it at all. It happened all throughout the days pre-election. Words taken out of context and exploded into something awful. It's not ever what the result is that's important. It's the cause. You have people who are uninformed making snap judgements and dig themselves even deeper by never getting better informed. They don't have the drive to be better informed! I don't know about you but that is a massive problem for me! People are making small decisions like "which toaster is the best" or "which item is best for my family" but they are also making huge decisions like who runs our government, all without looking below the surface. How does that make you feel. Because it scares me to death.

MMboensch's picture

I agree with what you said about the story of the woman in relation to other people today. I have to say that people who make snap decisions also infuriate me, but we need to do something about allowing them to become more informed about such topics. And I do agree with you that with this scenario, most people are concerned about what started the problem rather than finding a solution. However, could those who are actually informed about the topic speak up and potentially drive the unhappy group in a positive, developmental way? This way, I think that it would solve some problems.

However, I'm not sure that I understand your concern with people making different decisions. Decisions, whether big or small, are an important part of everyone's life. The fact that everyone has a right to make a decision, regardless if they look deep into the scenario or not, does not scare me to death. In fact, we all made decisions, big and small, every single day. Although, if something like this happens to be an extremely upsetting scenario, we need to understand when to find our voices and calmly express our concern. We can't force others to think or to see like-minded, though. Like the article explained, we all come from different perspectives and thus value different things. We have to expect this and be well-informed about the topic in order to persuade the deviant to see things in your perspective. However, you must be prepared to look at things through their perspective, too.

 

UMalaskri's picture

I tend to agree with the article where it is saying that many Americans are not intersted in politics. Personally, I am not involved in politics but everyone of us is looking for love, peace, and democracy, which are not be found by politics or elections. We can consider that the right policy is to reconcile the various humanitarian approaches and reactions caused by members of the community with each other. It is also a relationship between the governor and the governed

UM Alali's picture

My impression of the ecology of democracy means local involvement of people in their communities. It is important to analyze one’s own motivations for becoming involved in an issue – at the local, state or national level. 

UMThorn's picture

In a time like now with the election it is especially important that we come together as people and work together to make well imformed decisions. We need to all stand tall as one country and think about "What's next? How can we advance?" In hard times like this we can not let things further us from coming together as a society or hindering progression. We must all work to become well imformed to make wise decisions, to start thinking more about the big picture. It starts with us though, each and everyone of us. We don't start making noise about issues until its getting out of hand, we don't try to seek change until it is too late. If we set an example then others follow suit, thus setting the domino effect of positive change. 

mquigly's picture

I completely agree with you it is always too late before anything changes. Society has realized this so they become violent and out of hand to get things to change. When really we should be able to change things that need to be changed peacefully. This election has brought out the worse in us and is allowing people to destroy others, and hurt them just because of their belief, gender, race or religion. When everyone has the freedom to believe in what they want. Hopefully someone stands up to everyone one soon or things are going to get a lot worse for everyone. I believe that the only way as you said we are going to get through this rough period in time is to come together and unite as one. It just takes one person to start the domino effect but that person has to be strong enough to change society’s views.

C_Miller's picture

I really do agree with this, but to be honest I have no idea what to do next. Where do we go? Which problems do we solve? Half of this country openly endorsed someone who both the American Nazi Party and the KKK actively love and support. People have been fighting since this countries inception for civil rights for all, yet 240 years later this is the best we can do. I'm not trying to be a pessimist but I don't know what else to be anymore. I don't know how exactly we can come together when lines have now been drawn in the sand. It feels like the United States is actually two countries, with how different everyone's beliefs are, and because of that, I feel like I can only hurt the situation and not help.

UMshaw's picture

This is all true, and thinking about the current state of our nation is extremely disheartening. However, we have come a very long way since the inception of the United States. It seems really impossible to change anything ourselves and honestly by ourselves we cannot. The best we can do is strive to make change in our own individual lives, and the more people who do this the greater the change will be. Our generation is going to be leading this country in the near future, and if we remain open minded and accepting perhaps things will change. I don't mean to be sounding like it will be all rainbows and butterflys, there is definetly a lot of work to be done. But I truly think that the more we educate and lead by example, the more progression we will make.