To the election

Luxembourg: Justice and Peace, not voting “paves the way to other people who use democracy for their own interests”

“Democracy can exist only if we know what is at stake, if we let ourselves be inspired by the idea of freedom, and if we face the threats raised against democracy in us and the developments of modern society”. This is the final passage of a statement made by Justice and Peace Luxembourg, in the run-up to the parliamentary election taking place in the Grand Duchy in October 2018. The problem is “the voters’ listlessness”, “a problematic phenomenon” all over the world, so that “people who enjoy the privilege of living in a democracy are less and less aware of their voting rights”. In this case, for Luxembourg this means that about 13% of voters did not vote in the municipal election in October 2017. Justice and Peace asks for “wide social soul searching” about the value of democracy to regain “enthusiasm for the great project of freedom and democracy”, so that “the duty to vote is not felt as compulsory” but is experienced as the “embodiment of a democratic achievement”. Nowadays, democracy is threatened by digitalisation, individualism, social fractures, global complexity, the weight of economic lobbies, the text explains. Voting means “taking responsibility as citizens” and is the embodiment of “respect for our fellow citizens” and social dialogue. Not voting means “not taking part in the democratic shaping of society and in the common interest”, and exposes us to the danger of “paving the way to other people, so they can use democracy for their own interests”.