Democracy shouldn't be something that's so easily squashed.


Yet here we are, the year 2021, where the election of 2020 is still being hotly contested. And while most reasonably-minded folks would accept the results and move on with their lives, the fact that it can even be contested at all is a stark reminder of the fragility of our system.

Reddit user, StevieD323, wanted to know what would bring it all crashing down when they asked:

What is the biggest threat to democracy?

It could be something simple, something we're already allowing to happen every day without any kind of preventable methods to stop it.

Watching Fox News Is Like Reading Those Grocery Store Tabloids

"(The lack of) media literacy, critical thinking skills, and the ability to detect fake news."

JonPaula

"It's like a huge chunk of the population started reading and believing the tabloids sold in grocery stores by the register. The digital environment has given new life to these old businesses."

Trepide

"Yeah, a lot of people are incorrectly identifying "social media" as the problem - but that's just the delivery mechanism. The problem is believe have no critical thinking skills."

JonPaula

There Can't Be Two Truths

"Fake news and gullible readers"

goose_of_reddit

"It's not even "gullible." It's more like "biased."

"Now there's two realities, two truths, and everybody is supposedly completely justified in subscribing to whatever reality they want to."

"They don't fall for it because they're easily swindled, they fall for it because they want it to be true."

"And their resentment for the other side confirms every bias they have."

theatrics_

Hate To Be The One To Tell You This...

"The death of independent and well funded journalism. A misinformed and indoctrinated populace is going to make misinformed and indoctrinated choices at the polling booth."

Mackntish

Leadership is at the forefront of what makes democracy unique. We're supposed to choose the people we believe would best serve their voter base, but sometimes that notion becomes skewed, creating less than ideal candidates.

"But My Candidate Is A Macho Sounding Jerk. That Must Equate."

"The idea of what a strong leader is"

PompeyMagnus1

"The general voter has absolutely no idea how a country works so even the best informed voter has a skewed perspective."

"I've always stated there should be a test that demonstrates you have a basic understanding of potential candidates before being allowed to vote. It's absurd to think that a person who recieves their info from twitter has an equal vote of power compared to a citizen who did the proper research on which candidate best represents them."

Icycube99

Lies, All Day, 'Er Day

"Lack of consequences for those who openly tell lies to the public."

jdsuperman

"This one feels both accurate, and closely linked to the death of shame / post truth society. Once upon a time a politician (of any allegiance) caught in a provable lie would be "shamed" (often accompanied by resignation, or at least an apology). Now that whole moral structure is gone. Never apologise. There are no lies, because there is no truth. Deny, deflect, never back down. No proof is proof enough, no source reliable enough."

bazpoint

To Heal, You Understand

"A complete unwillingness to try to understand someone else's point of view. Regardless of what it is, or what side of the fence you sit on….. understanding why someone feels the they do is in my opinion the first step in trying to heal the worlds problems. Who shouts the loudest with the "I'm right and you're wrong" mentality isn't helping anyone."

frustratedcracker

Perhaps it has already happened, which is a scary thought to consider. However, when you look around at the current political landscape and see the shady things happening, it's not hard to feel like the battle might already be lost.

Changing Things With A Dollar

"The influence of monied interests. All it takes is a few hundred thousand in campaign contributions to a single senator to stonewall a prescription drug price reform bill."

uninc4life2010

"It's a huge problem. People with money have incredible power over anyone else. Look at climate change, a topic which everyone should be concerned about and we should all be working together to solve."

"But people from the oil industry and others have been able to buy politicians, flood the media with fake counter-science, and suppress voting enough that preserving the environment is a controversial topic nowadays."

irrelevant_usernam3

Being Unable To Think For Yourself

"Lobbying and lack of education. Always has been"

CptBarba

"Yeah this is basically the answer. Legalized bribery makes voting irrelevant."

rossimus

"So true. People are so uninformed that they will literally fight you when you tell them that lobbying is not compatible with democracy."

Ketchup-and-Mustard

You Could Probably Just Say Ted Cruz

"Bribery, sorry lobbying. Complete bullsh-t"

Soma_Tweaker

"Reminds me of that episode of Rome where Herod "gifts" Antony money after he says Romans don't take bribes but gifts instead. Times haven't changed."

LahmiaTheVampire

"Reminds me of the tweet Ted Cruz posted about "snowflakes" upset ahout net neutrality. Then AOC letting him know snowflakes isn't a thing an elected official should say and that he was just paid thousands from Comcast (or one of those) right before the tweet and that it's all public record."

Rickrickrickrickrick

The Winner

"People who think that if they lose it's not democracy."

EvenSpoonier

"Absolutely this. If you only believe in democracy when you win, you don't believe in democracy."

Kahzgul

"No one is really saying it, but if we keep allowing all the BS conspiracy stuff to drown out the truth then we are done for. And it's happening right now. Tucker and all the other BS artists if you're listening , you are literally destroying America."

Christ_on_a_Crakker

Be ever vigilant, analyze information with a critical mind, and vote when possible. Keeping democracy alive requires action on all fronts.

Want to "know" more?

Never miss another big, odd, funny, or heartbreaking moment again.

Sign up for the Knowable newsletter here.

CW: Suicide

There is so much to learn in life.

And once you acquire certain things mentally, you regret it.

How much 411 have you come across over time that made you think... "How can I unlearn that?"

Yeah, not possible.

Knowledge is power and sometimes it's a nightmare.

Don't we have enough to keep us up at night?

Damn curiosity.

Well let's do some learning.

Redditor RedBoyFromNewy wanted to shed some light on creepy issues we need to be discussing. They asked:

"What’s a disturbing fact that not a lot of people know of?"
Keep reading... Show less
People Share Their Craziest 'Oh You Thought This Was Bad, It Gets Worse!' Experiences
krakenimages on Unsplash

The best stories are ones with exciting plot twists.

Keep reading... Show less
People Divulge The Most Depressing Truths They've Made Peace With
Abhijith P on Unsplash

Life is full of disappointments. We lose out on a job opportunity or the one designer article of clothing we really wanted is not available in our size.

Keep reading... Show less

The truth matters.

Something one would think was a given in modern society.

Yet all over the world, there are people so unbelievably stubborn, that they simply refuse to believe the facts.

Sometimes even when presented with evidence.

This could be for something menial, such as refusing to believe that a cotton candy was actually invented by a dentist.

But sometimes, refusing to believe the truth could have serious consequences, up to and including climate change, the effectiveness of masks, and the disproportionate amount of gun violence in the US.

Redditor Lady_Of_The_Water was curious about the many things, both frivolous and serious, people refused to believe were true, leading them to ask:

"Whats something someone thought you were wrong about and ridiculed you for it, but it turns out you were right?"
Keep reading... Show less