Minorities in Democracy – There are Always Two Sides

  • Martin Luther King is quoted as saying, “Now is the time to make America a democracy.”
  • Democracy is a universal ideology “all men are created equal.” People demand equal rights on this basis even if intellectually they are not equal.
  • In democracy the minority has a voice which they employ and abuse sometimes. Democracy has in it mercy which isn’t found in theocracy.

Minorities have a voice in Democracy. The communists a minority in America burned the American flag on the lawn of the White House on Independence Day in the middle of the address of President Trump..  Democracy allows the burning of the flag as a symbol of freedom of speech. Anarchism is also a minority. If not, there would be no state or law and order.

Martin Luther King is quoted as saying, “Now is the time to make America a democracy.” Rev Al Sharpton criticized President Trump for not celebrating Martin Luther King Day. This was because of the conflict about building the Wall in the South. Blacks are 33% of the entire government and military work force who suffered from the federal work shutdown. President Trump and Democrats differ about their approach toward making America a democracy. Black Americans, who were once a minority given their human rights, are building themselves and their voice in American politics.

African Americans (also referred to as Black Americans or Afro-Americans) are an ethnic group of Americans with total or partial ancestry from any of the black racial groups of Africa. The term typically refers to descendants of enslaved black people who are from the United States. (Pictured: Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.)

In the Civil War of 1861 President Lincoln freed the slaves.  Even afterwards the black Africans still had to live with the stigma of being a minority. There remained opposition to Abraham Lincoln and shortly after entering his second term as President he was assassinated. Andrew Johnson took over his position. In the 1950s and the 1960s began the Civil Rights Movement. Even though the Civil War had officially abolished slavery it did not end discrimination against blacks.

There are two types of minorities: racial and ethnic.  In terms of sociology minority group refers to a category of people who experience a disadvantage as compared to members of a dominant social group. Ethnic refers to minority discrimination based on religion, style of life.  Racial refers to a particular blood genetic difference between people. Grouping of people comes naturally.  People attach to those that are in their ethnic or racial groups.  Going out of your group may sometimes be impossible because of discrimination.  In grouping, the majority is usually in power.  There are minorities which have gained power in certain countries and are the ruling group like in Syria Alawites of President Assad are only 20% of the population.

Jews and Muslims are minorities in America based on their religious backgrounds. Spanish and black Africans are still minorities not necessarily because of their numbers but because they are still growing out of a minority stigma.  Naturally people favor their own groups (ethnic or religious) and may discriminate. In a democracy, discrimination can be against the law.  Discrimination can be a legal problem for those that discriminate in business, education, and community.

Democracy is a universal ideology “all men are created equal.”  People demand equal rights on this basis even if intellectually they are not equal.  There are human beings who are stronger physically more suitable for physical labor. Other human beings have higher IQ levels.  People sometimes have to discriminate in their own interests to choose those who are more qualified to join them in action whether in employment, military, politics, or social life.  Choose yourself a soul mate.  A handsome man can find a beautiful girl.  If you are set up with a date, she may want you but you don’t want her or visa versa.  Sometimes you have to discriminate even if there are hard feelings.  They asked Melanie Trump if President Trump married her for her beauty.  She answered yes. President Trump is particular about who he wants to be his wife.  Being particular is not considered discrimination in sex and marriage.

Sometimes you have to discriminate.  Democracy cannot force people to love everyone equally.  Rich people can choose their friends also living in wealth.  They have to sometimes discriminate to protect their own fortunes. Poor people would like to become the friends of the wealthy but even in a democracy you cannot force friendships.  President Trump justified building the wall by pointing to wealthy people who build locked gates around their homes to protect their properties. A poor person rings the bell at the gate of a rich person.  From the inside they ask, “who is it?”  From the inside they have the right to open the door or not.  This is democracy which allows discrimination.  The poor want to break down the walls around the houses of the rich.  Bernie Sanders is campaigning to give free tuition to all Americans in universities and wants to tax the rich stock owners for this capital.  Universities discriminate when choosing their students.  They set the rates for tuition. Harvard is more particular and tuition is higher. Some places offers free tuition and are more particular than others.

IIhar Omar represents the Muslim minority.  The Muslim minority has grown in America and has in the Congress a representative.  She is the voice of Muslims.  In defense of Muslims she discriminates against those who she believes are against Muslims.

Alexandria Ocasio Cortez, from a Spanish Latino minority, has gained the support of her constituents to speak out for women’s rights.  Women want equal rights in a democracy.

Grouping of people choosing their favorites is part of human nature. Democracy defends human nature and human rights.  At the same time Democracy prohibits discrimination.  There are always two sides which are in conflict in a Democracy right and left.  Both sides have power.  There is the power of the rich and the power of the poor.  There is minority and majority.  The rich can be the minority but the power of their money can control politics. The poor by nature want to take money from the pockets of the rich in many ways.  Each political group defends its own members who are citizens.  If they are not citizens they have limited rights under the constitution but God helps them anyway.

Beta Israel (“House of Israel” or “Community of Israel” also known as Ethiopian) are a Jewish community, that developed and lived for centuries in the area of the Kingdom of Aksum and the Ethiopian Empire, that is currently divided between the Amhara and Tigray Regions of Ethiopia and Eritrea. Most of the community emigrated to Israel in the late 20th century.

Ethiopians in Israel want equal rights. They came from a country which suppressed their rights as Beta Israeli Ethiopians. In Ethiopia Beta Israel was a minority without a voice in their land.  Today in Israel they are demonstrating in the streets for equal rights like all minorities living in a democracy.  In Ethiopia they would be shot down for doing what they are doing today in Israel blocking roads.
In Ethiopia living conditions have improved over the past few years.  They still consider themselves Ethiopians even when living in Israel.  When they came to Israel the conditions were unbearable.  Maybe they are having regrets about coming to Israel.

The Orthodox religious are a minority in Israel. The Orthodox religious in Israel were given special privileges by Ben Gurion the first Prime Minister of Israel.  One of these privileges was that their children had exemption from military service.  Today the government of Israel is pressuring them for their children to join the military.  The government wants to draft them.  The Orthodox religious parties represent them in the government.  Israel is a democracy.  The Orthodox religious called the Charedim are vehemently against the draft of their children male and female.  They have gone into the streets and have blocked roads against draft of their children.  Orthodox Judaism preaches to return the Jewish nation to the nation under Biblical law. In Biblical law demonstrations like these were forbidden and even punishable by death.  The King in Biblical law had the right to kill indiscriminately rebels opposing his rule.  Orthodox Judaism is against Democracy and for Theocracy.  When they go into the streets to demonstrate they know that Israel is a nation with mercy. They hate the modern government of Israel but love it.

In the news today in Israel, the Orthodox Jewish parties are objecting to the mayor of the city of Ramat Gan (known as the location of the Israel Diamond Center located near the Ultra-Orthodox city of Bnei Brak) allowing bus transportation on the Sabbath.  Sabbath observance is accepted in Israel as a day off from work.  The exclusively Orthodox Sabbath is not a law of the country.  The Sabbath resting on the seventh day distinguishes the Jewish nation from the other nations of the world.  Without the Sabbath Israel is no longer a Jewish State.

In democracy the minority has a voice which they employ and abuse sometimes. Democracy has in it mercy which isn’t found in theocracy. People need mercy; some are against mercy. Mercy allows people to demonstrate even against democracy like the burning of the American Flag on the lawn of the White House on Independence Day by the Communist party. The Communist party is a minority in America – Thank God. Those that are against democracy are also against Christianity.  Communists and socialists are atheists against Christianity and all religions and against democracy.  There are religions in the world against Christianity which favor theocracy over democracy.  There are even Orthodox Christians for theocracy that believe in Christ as the Lord the King who replaced Jesus the son of God the Messiah of freedom and mercy.  There are humanitarians who believe in Democracy who are agnostics but not atheists. Atheists naturally become socialists and communists like Karl Marx.

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David Wexelman

Rabbi David Wexelman is the  author of five books on the topics of World Unity and Peace, and Progressive Jewish Spirituality. Rabbi Wexelman is a member of the American Friends of Maccabee, a charitable organization helping the poor in the United States and in Israel.  Donations are tax deductible in the USA.

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