|Quoting Quokkas (Reply 12):|
A people under a dictatorship who have been accustomed to losing far more than 40-60% of the issues may possibly be more aware of what constitutes democracy
Over my lifetime I've been amazingly luck enough to be present at the birth of a new independent nation - a peaceful process and an amazing thing to watch as the old colonial power turned over the last reins of power.
I've also been present during the final phases of the destruction of one nation, two very violent endings of dictatorships, and one not terribly violent end of a dictatorship.
I've spend a lot of time studying the 'nation building' process. Both on an internal only level, and with an external support system.
My comments are on the generalities of transitioning the mindset from "We have no power, no input" to "We all have to work together" of a democratic system.
People understand not having power, not having an input in the government process. Even if some people understand that democracy doesn't mean 'We always win' - they haven't lived it. It isn't ingrained in their bones.
Back 30+ years ago, I did some work and research in Japan on how they developed a democratic government mindset. Talking to older Japanese who were mostly born right after the war, or were young children in the war - their comments were that their parents never understood the power of the vote. And the necessity of working with the government, even if their party lost the election.
I've seen the same thing in the Philippines, with new Vietnamese immigrants to the US, with immigrants to the US from eastern Europe, Africa and the Middle East, including Egypt.
My ex-wife was one of those people. Even during the 2004 election, she was worried and upset that her current (19 years of marriage at that time) husband was working for John Kerry in his free time. He was a MCPO in the US Navy with over 26 years service - she was worried that publicly supporting the opponent of the sitting president might cost him a step or two of rank, and possibly get him kicked out of the Navy without a pension. The ingrained fears of living under a dictatorial regime while growing up and a young adult are hard to put aside - even after 29 years as a US citizen.
By and large the people who were adults never completely trust a democracy. Never completely trust that their 'anti-government' actions won't be recorded and used against them in the future.
That 40+ years of studying the application of the democratic process has made me very thankful that I grew up in a country where the principles apply on a gross level
It's never perfect - certainly. There are plenty of exceptions to a blanket rule applying to every person.
But I've found that large groups of unhappy oppressed people take a long, long time to develop an understanding and a mindset to be a working functional part of a democratic system.