Democracies The word democracy comes from the Greek words demos , which means “the people,” and cracy , which means “rule by.” Today, we call a regime a democracy when many or all of its people share political power. There are two types of democracies: • Direct democracy: Citizens make all the decisions. They gather frequently to vote on laws, regulations, and appointments. There are no elected representatives. Direct democracy was common in ancient Greece; today, it exists at a local level in town hall meetings held throughout the United States. • Representative democracy: Citizens elect officials to act on their behalf. If the officeholders disappoint or anger them, the citizens can choose new officials at the next election. A regime that runs by representative democracy is known as a republic. In a republic, citizens hold the power. There are two major types of representative democracies: • Parliamentary democracy: Citizens elect officials to act as legislators.
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This note was uploaded on 01/31/2012 for the course POS POS2112 taught by Professor Leslietaylor during the Winter '09 term at Broward College.