Tuesday, 23 November 2010

Direct Action or Direct Democracy

There have been two cases in recent years when juries have acquitted vandals who, in one case, damaged the nose cone of a Hawk jet being sold to Indonesia and, in another, attempted to prevent B52s flying on a bombing mission to Iraq. The court seemed to think that their direct action prevented a greater crime. Is this a symptom of the ineffectiveness of our democracy and would direct democracy help?

I suspect it would. Sure, there will likely be a small proportion of the population bent on destruction, but these people may lack the support of a wider group that otherwise gives them the backbone to proceed. Also, a jury may be more likely to convict vandals who could have otherwise pursued their objectives by easily accessible democratic means, by persuasion and debate.

No comments: