BEIJING, Nov. 29 — Either play by my rules or get out — the United States has delivered this crystal-clear message by hand-picking guests for the upcoming so-called “summit for democracy” according to its own definition and standards of democracy.
The convention’s stated goal is to “set forth an affirmative agenda for democratic renewal,” yet it is far from being democratic. Under the guise of democracy, the United States is essentially promoting anti-democracy.
Democracy is a universal right, not a vested interest of a few countries. Whether a country is democratic should be ultimately judged by the people of that country.
Such a summit instigates hatred and divisions at a time when unity is the need of the hour, as the world is reeling under a raging pandemic, rising protectionism, and the mounting threat of climate change.
It has drawn a clear line between “democracies” and “non-democracies” defined by the United States itself in the world. In today’s multifaceted and interconnected world, this over-simplistic black-white dichotomy is ineffective and unhelpful.
The dysfunction of American democracy is nothing new. Governance failure, tragic military intervention, and political polarization have all made American democracy a bad advertisement.
The vast majority of Americans feel deeply disappointed by U.S. political system. A recent report by the Pew Research Center shows that only 17 percent of the surveyed think American democracy is a good example for other countries to follow.
According to another study by Robert Bosch Foundation in Germany, over 50 percent of the Americans surveyed think their democratic system doesn’t function at all under the current circumstances.
The COVID-19 pandemic has also revealed that American democracy has strayed away from finding a shared goal.
Washington should first “cure its own disease” by holding its own domestic “summit for democracy,” bringing together its congressional leaders and politicians from across the aisle to reaffirm their commitment to American democracy and acknowledge its own human rights violations in a country with deeply ingrained racism.
Democracy is not a patent of a single country, but a universal value shared by all humanity. There is no single definition of democracy or a universal way to achieve it. No single country has the authority to monopolize the definition and understanding of democracy.- XINHUA