What is American democracy? With an artful and delicate choice of words, some US officials advertise it as a "beacon of democracy.”
For the Americans, however, American democracy is nothing but a promise that US politicians make playfully and have no intention of keeping.
The democratic slogans of some US politicians seem pale and weak when it comes to the reality of advancing the economy and safeguarding people's well-being, especially amid economic crises, natural disasters, epidemics and other major challenges. Such slogans have increasingly revealed their true nature, which is deception.
American democracy is hollow inside and haunted by deep-rooted problems, no matter how it is bragged about by certain US politicians. This is obvious to both Americans and those outside of the country.
More and more observers consider the US a unique example of a sick democratic system in today's world.
American political scientist Nathan Gardels has a profound view of the institutional predicament of American democracy. He said there is scarce political capacity for the long-term thinking, planning, and continuity of governance in American democracy. Democracy actually yields to a short-term tyranny of breaking news and "one man, one vote" sovereign will, leading to the prevalence of populism. In the 2020 elections, people's confidence in the American democratic system fell to its lowest point in 20 years, said the Wall Street Journal, citing data from a poll.
When economy went into depression and COVID-19 broke out, "tipping points" were found almost everywhere in the polarized and divided American society.
The Black Lives Matter movement hasn't quieted down in America, and Stop Asian Hate rallies have spurred another wave of protest across the country. While shooting incidents seem to never end, gun control bills have continuously been shelved.
Driven by an out-of-control COVID-19 epidemic at home, the US is seeing a worsening human rights crises, widening gap between the rich and poor, and faster social division.
Facts have shown that American democracy has already been distorted amid its struggles.
"We cannot mistake absolutism for principle, or substitute spectacle for politics, or treat name-calling as reasoned debate. We must act, knowing that our work will be imperfect," said former US president Barack Obama in the inaugural address for his second term of office.
Unfortunately, the truth is the political ecology in the US hasn't been changed. Some US politicians still fix their eyes on money politics and have no trouble crossing the moral red line in political marketing. Their political operations, which disobey fairness and justice, continue unshaken.
It should be noted that the further the American democracy descends into money politics, the more lies would be fabricated by US politicians to cover up this truth, which will only drive American democracy to collapse even faster.
When thousands of demonstrators violently stormed the US Capitol earlier this year, the deceptive plot by certain US politicians was finally laid bare.
This is the repercussion of the actions of certain high-ranking American officials who spread lies, hold democracy in contempt, and incite hatred and division, said German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier.
It's time that the US politicians stop telling lies and fooling people. It is no use labeling the country "the land of freedom" and a "beacon of democracy.” As the pandemic is still spreading, giving the public a fair answer to the question “What is American democracy?” remains a serious and urgent task for US politicians.