nrp: You Call This Democracy?

National Radio Project: Making Contact

You Call This Democracy?


Women and alternative political parties – Green, Libertarian – this 1 party
(Republicrates) strangehold on the political process is sooo different
from the Canadian experience where political parties come and go as
their message and ideology meet and/or reflect the needs of citizens
or not. I’m asounded that Americans put up with this – this is NOT a
democracy – choosing between red and blue keeps people from realizing
that they really have no say in government.

Why it is relevant to a national audience

American promote the benefits of democracy elsewhere in the world, then wonder why they feel so disenfranchized. There is a good reasons for that – they are.

Potential interviewees

Alternative party representatives – Libertarian, Green,
Political science professors who study this stuff
Respected intellectuals who speak out on the subject
Government representatives who are encouraging change

1. What human rights, social or economic justice issue will be addressed?

Democracy is an important American belief and a foundation of the country. Most Americans do not realize the extent to which their say in government has been stipped of significance in the political process.

2. Which of the voices/opinions are not often heard on the mainstream media?

There are two important points. First, confirmation that America is only marginally a democracy today. Secondly, admitting alternative parties to have access to the political process is the only way to ensure real representation of citizens.

3. How will the point of view expressed differ from what is heard in the commercial media?

Third or alternate parties are often portrayed as the lunitic fringe. Presenting a more tempered view is important to counteract the media image.

4. Explain how the piece will address the structural roots of inequities.
5. Describe the practices, policies and or institutions that are biased with respect to race, class, gender, sexual orientation or socioeconomic power, and how they will be exposed.

Most other democracies encourge and promote multiple voices – Canada is a good example of the ebb and flow of political parties over time.

6. How will the piece question access to power and/or reveal the use and abuse of power?
7. How will the piece connect the issue(s) addressed to the life of the average listener?
8. How will the piece motivate the listener to act?

Be sure to provide potential interviewees, a succinct one to two paragraph summary and why it is relevant to a national audience.


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