Words & Meaning

27 August 2022 – I think we need to make a careful distinction between “democracy” and “freedom.”

They are not synonymous.

“Democracy” is social and reciprocal. It is a contract between individuals and their society, with defined rights and responsibilities for each vis-à-vis the other.

“Freedom” is personal and unilateral. Its focus is individual self-determination.

“Democracy” necessarily includes defined freedoms. “Freedom” does not necessarily include democracy.

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  1. Blane Hogue

     /  27 August 2022

    Such a good idea to have this Words and Meanings site. Freedom is such a misused word and lately for many people has come to stand for the ability to do anything they want regardless of laws and how it might affect others.
    Can’t wait for you to post words that are misused – there are so many!

  2. I totally agree. Those who are constantly caterwauling about freedom pursue it at the expense of everyone else’s.

  3. Alex Schumacher

     /  27 August 2022

    Good point! What many so frequently forget is that an essential component of human rights is that of responsibility towards others in this society in which we live towards ourselves and towards all other elements of this interdependent world of which we are part


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    "Traveller, there is no path. Paths are made by walking" -- Antonio Machado (1875-1939)

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