In the May 2018 Rural Montana magazine (p. 12), Senator Jon Tester begins his response to a posed question with this statement: “Attacks on our democracy can come in many different forms.” I would like to point out to Senator Tester that we are a republic and not a democracy.
To say we are a democracy is an attack against our U.S. Constitution and the republic it stands for. The word democracy does not appear in the U.S. Constitution, but reference is made to the word republic in Article 4 Section 4 of the U.S. Constitution where it states, “The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a Republican Form of Government…”
The Soldiers Training Manual issued by the War Department, Nov. 30, 1928 sets forth the exact and truthful definitions of a democracy and of a republic. They are as follows:
Democracy: “A government of the masses. Authority derived through mass meeting or any other form of direct expression. Results in mobocracy. Attitude toward property is communistic – negating property rights. Attitude toward law is that the will of the majority shall regulate, whether it be based upon deliberation or governed by passion, prejudice, and impulse, without restraint to consequences. Results in demagogism, license, agitation, discontent, anarchy.”
Republic: “Authority is derived through the election by the people of public officials best fitted to represent them. Attitude toward property is respect for laws and individual right, and a sensible administration of justice in accord with fixed principles and established evidence, with a strict regard to consequences. A greater number of citizens and extent of territory may be brought within its compass. Avoids the dangerous extreme of either tyranny or mobocracy. Results in statesmanship, liberty, reason, justice, contentment, and progress.”
Let’s follow the United States Constitution and get our Republic restored. So help us God!
Tony Kimberlin Libby, Mont.