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Announcing the "Democracy 2.0 Declaration"

Our friends at Mobilize.org, a wonderful all-partisan network dedicated to inspiring young people to increase their civic engagement and political participation, just released the millennial generation’s Democracy 2.0 Declaration. The declaration is based on the input of 1,581 survey respondents and 47 young people who participated in the recent Democracy 2.0 Summit. NCDD congratulates Mobilize.org this powerful declaration, and we can’t wait to see what comes out of their upcoming Party for the Presidency!

Democracy 2.0 Declaration

Democracy is an unfinished project. It’s time we upgrade.

We, the Millennial Generation, are uniquely positioned to call attention to today’s issues and shape the future based on the great legacy we have inherited. Our founding fathers intended for every generation to build, indeed to innovate, on the American experience. We realize that as young people we are expected to be the leaders of tomorrow, but we understand that as citizens we are called to be the leaders of today.

We are compelled by the critical state of our present democracy to establish a new vision.

In a world often damaged by conflict and intolerance, we must commit to develop common ground through equality and open mindedness.

In a world often damaged by social isolation and materialism, we must commit to community at the family, local, national and global levels.

In a world often damaged by instant gratification, we must commit to creating sustainable solutions.

In a world often damaged by apathy and disillusionment, we must commit to civic participation and inclusion of all voices.

The present state of our democracy impedes opportunity for real change. We must connect the specific issues failing our population with their underlying systemic causes.

Our government seems unable or unwilling to adequately address our broadest problems, including economic inequality, America’s role in the world, and the effect of money on the democratic process. But we must remember, our government is only as effective as the sum of its citizens. Low civic participation means the most disadvantaged people in society are neglected and we overlook many potential solutions to our problems.

Our generation is telling a different story. We are uniquely positioned to foster community engagement through social networks of all kinds. It is our responsibility to use information and technology to upgrade democracy, transform communication and advance political engagement and civic participation.

We are social networkers, we are multi-taskers, we are communicators and we are opinionated. The informality of our generation breaks down traditional barriers and opens doors for inclusiveness and equality. Most importantly, we are leaders in a society that yearns for leadership.

It’s our democracy, it’s time to act.

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Sandy Heierbacher
Sandy Heierbacher is the Founding Director of the National Coalition for Dialogue & Deliberation (NCDD). Sandy has an M.A. in International Management from SIT Graduate Institute, and also serves as a Research Deputy for the Kettering Foundation. Click here for a list of articles and resources authored by Sandy.

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