Democracy Soup

Making sense out of the world of politics

Taking risks fighting for democracy, Green Revolution in Iran wins Wings of Justice

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Originally published on on June 17, 2009

Green Revolution

It’s easy to shout about democracy and freedom when you live in a country where you have opportunities to practice those credos. But the true test of democracy and freedom comes when practicing them in a repressive regime.

For the Green Revolution, the collection of protesters in Iran, those who have taken to the streets to protest the seemingly unlikely landslide win of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, they are exhibiting democracy and freedom in a very dangerous situation.

We have seen deaths so far. We unfortunately expect more deaths. And lots of injuries, many of which we’ll never get the true perspective of the impact. But to these brave people, they fight on because democracy is important to them.

It does make you wonder why we didn’t respond in much the same way in 2000 or 2004, why we didn’t take to the streets to stand up for a stacked election result. Maybe we can learn something from the way these Iranians exhibit democracy and freedom.

They are risking their health. They are risking their lives. They feel that making sure the true results of a democratic election process are fulfilled are worth fighting for.

We preach about the importance of people going out to vote, and how informed citizenry can make a difference at the polls. Our time in the voting booth isn’t enough; we need to make sure the results match the will of the citizenry.

As we have seen over the last few days in Iran, these people who have taken to the streets, who have Twittered, anyone who has contributed to the Green Revolution has shown the rest of the world that democratic principles need to rule.

They are learning what we have learned over the last few years that there is a void, an emptiness when you feel like your vote didn’t count.

Way too often, Americans act like the fight for democracy ended in 1783. But as we’ve learned many times throughout our long history, the fight for democracy never dies, especially because there are many groups who want to take it away from us. These Iranian protesters have taken chances to show us bravery and courage can be displayed in non-ideal circumstances, that democracy means making great sacrifices.

This cartoon shows that Iranians aren’t following our recent ways in reacting to stolen elections. But perhaps, they are learning to do what we didn’t, more in the spirit of what we did do, even if they were over 200 years ago.

For taking on a brave stance to fight for democracy in a country that has far fewer freedoms than we do, we gladly give to the protesters of the Green Revolution the Wings of Justice award.

picture 1 credit: STR/AFP/Getty Images
picture 2 credit: BEHROUZ MEHRI/AFP/Getty Images

Written by democracysoup

June 17, 2009 at 6:00 am

Posted in Uncategorized

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