Over the years, the United States has claimed to be a “beacon of democracy”. But even at best as a “lamp”, it has become increasingly dim and could barely shed light on itself. Taking its electoral system as an example, more than US$16.7 billion was spent by both parties in the 2022 midterm elections, dwarfing the 2021 GDPs of more than 70 countries. The top 21 families making political donations contributed at least a million each, totalling US$783 million.
Over 90% of those elected as lawmakers won by splurging funds. The so-called American democracy is merely a “game of the rich” founded on capital. Americans’ pride in their democracy has dropped sharply, from 90% in 2002 to 54% in 2022, according to a joint Washington Post-University of Maryland survey.
Despite mounting problems at home, the United States continued to behave with a sense of superiority, usurp the role of a “lecturer of democracy”, and organized another edition of the so-called “Summit for Democracy”. The purpose of the meeting is to form small circles in international relations and stoke bloc and ideological confrontation.
Democracy is a common value of humanity, not a special right to a few countries. Measuring the world’s political systems with a single yardstick is inherently undemocratic. Human civilization, if compared to a garden, should be a diverse place in which democracy in different countries blooms like a hundred flowers. What suits is the best. There is no democratic system that is perfect or superior to others, let alone a democratic model that works for all countries.
China is committed to whole-process people’s democracy, which is not only reflected in the complete system design but also in the functioning and good effect of the system. Take the system of people’s congresses – China’s foundational political system – as an example. The election of deputies to people’s congresses is the largest-scale democratic election in the world, as well as a good testament to China’s whole-process people’s democracy. Among the 2,977 deputies to the 14th National People’s Congress, 442 are from ethnic groups, covering every one of the 55 ethnic minority groups, 42 are returned overseas Chinese, 790 are women, and 497 are front-line workers and farmers. Furthermore, China has comprehensively developed consultative democracy and actively developed primary-level democracy, giving full expression to the will of the people, protecting their rights and interests, and sparking their creativity. Over the past 40-plus years since the start of reform and opening-up, China has lifted over 800 million people out of absolute poverty and built the world’s largest social security system in which basic medical insurance has covered over 1.3 billion population. The people’s sense of happiness and gain has been continuously improved. It should be up to the people of a country to judge whether the country’s system is good or not and whether it is democratic or not. The few self-righteous countries have no right to point fingers.
As the world today is faced with compound challenges and crises, the international community must pool efforts together. China is ready to work with other countries to uphold humanity’s common values of peace, development, fairness, justice, democracy, and freedom, actively promote greater democracy in international relations, resolutely resist and reject pseudo-democracy, anti-democracy and political manipulation under the guise of democracy, and build a community with a shared future for mankind.