The strength of democratic society lies in each individual’s decision making, which establishes a foundation to check whether those decisions are valid or not, and comes up with a consensus in the society. One of the prestigious Japanese historian Ichisada Miyazaki even states that it is a rule for a free society to spend enough time to choose an option that makes a better society and test whether it is the best solution for all stakeholders. 1
Decision making, raised here includes matters such as whether to eat a bread or rice balls for breakfast to whether to vote for which congressmen for the next election. If you look at your daily life carefully, you find out that you don’t live a second without decision making. You are granted a right to choose what “works” for you and for some cases, making such choices should not be taken for granted. Even when we are still striving for human rights in all sorts of events, you need to read a history book to go over how we made this society to be fairer and more equal. Having the right to select an option is critical for a democratic society.
People in democratic society need to appreciate what have gained or else, they will be devasted to lose it when society started to embrace non-democratic values. Like peace, you understand how it is valuable when you know you don’t have the choice to make decisions.
Having said this, the news on the closure of Apple Daily, the Hong Kong’s pro-democracy paper 2 was an event not surprising to happen, however, raised mixed feelings for the Hong Kong citizens, who have cherished the freedom of making ones’ case in public for many years. It is enormously hard to envision living in a society under control and restricted of ones’ freedom of thought. Making a decision on one’s belief and faith is a crucial component of how we live our lives.
1. Miyazaki Ichisada, “Chinese History, Volume 1,” P. 41