Pluralism theory

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The doctrine of pluralism holds that political power and decision-making are based on the ruling government (Gilens & Page, 2014). The decision-making, however, encompasses all interest groups, contributing to decisions for the common interests of the whole society or nation. Elitism asserts that representatives of the policy planning networks and economic elites dominate the major decisions and strategies of the day, regardless of the political structures of society. Hyperpluralism, on the other hand, argues that when interested groups are too diverse regarding practices, beliefs, race, or ethnicity, there may be a struggle for supremacy (Gilens & Page, 2014). Such competitions may become so intense that they would overpower the government, thereby making the groups impossible to rule. With the rise of activism, pluralism is more relevant to American democracy, since it gives room for the citizens to air their views through the various groups that represent them. Pluralism accommodates the views of all interest groups in the decision-making process, thereby eliminating the possibilities of marginalization.

Question Two

Although citizens may view the debate on Christmas celebration as an attack against Christianity or emergence of religious intolerance, I do not agree that it is a culture war. The First Amendment allows the citizens to express themselves and associate with any religion freely. America embraces varied cultural and religious practices of its population. Thus, issues like celebrating Christmas would not be a source of culture war (O’Reilly, 2013). It is clear the US is slowly losing the cultural values it was built on over time, and people like O’Reilly may view it as a culture war. However, with increasing public opinion and diverse religious beliefs, Americans should be accommodative to all religious practices rather than condemning them.

References

Gilens, M., & Page, B. I. (2014). Testing theories of American politics: Elites, interest groups, and average citizens. Perspectives on Politics, 12(3), 564-581.

O’Reilly, B. (2013). The culture war in America between traditional folks & secular progressive. YouTube. Retrieved on October 19, 2017 from https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=12&v=wAPK1HAYcbw

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