Ideology of Pluralism in America

Pluralism is a political ideology where power is shared among different groups in society. It implies the decentralization of decision-making to people from diverse backgrounds who hold a variety of opinions. In a pluralist society, rather than an elite of people, relatively small but independent groups contribute to the running of the society. Consequently, pluralism is characterized by diversity in areas such as religion, culture, economics, politics, and ethnicity.

America is becoming more pluralistic as evidenced by the involvement of different groups in the political sphere. In recent years, many diverse groups have helped shape American politics. For instance, both Republicans and Democrats actively participate in the political process. Both groups contribute to contentious debates on issues such as abortion rights, immigration, environmental pollution, economic policies, and workers’ rights. For instance, during former President Trump’s rule, America reduced trade with China in an attempt to decrease the US trade deficit (Lawder). Despite many Democrats being against this policy, it prevailed. Similarly, Democrats have instituted policies that do not appeal to the Republicans. Aside from these two main parties, American politics is influenced by other smaller groups. The LGBTQ and Black communities are examples of such groups. Consequently, the political arena comprises diverse people who believe in different things, which is the hallmark of a pluralist society.

Pluralism yields numerous benefits to a society that adopts it. First, pluralism strengthens democracy since many groups participate in the process. It would be undemocratic for a selected few to govern the nation without input from other people or groups. Second, pluralism encourages diversity, which is essential for good relations between people. When people from different backgrounds live and work together, pluralism helps create cohesion between them (Janjuha-Jivraj). America has people of different nationalities, religions, races, genders, and political beliefs. When all groups feel represented in the political arena, it helps people live together peacefully. Without pluralism, one group may feel dominated by another if the latter is largely responsible for making political decisions that affect everyone. Finally, pluralism increases citizens’ participation in political processes, such as voting. More people are likely to vote when they think their chosen officials have a chance of representing them in office.

Despite the benefits associated with pluralism, there are also costs to it. The first main disadvantage of this political philosophy is that it causes tension between groups. For instance, there has been a controversy over the place of religion in American politics for a long time now. Since everyone seeks representation, it is difficult to agree even on important matters. Pluralism also confuses because people cannot agree on the extent of participation of the various groups (La Raja). Each group is always demanding more decision-making powers, which deters actual decision-making. For instance, the handling of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has been less than optimal in America since different sects cannot agree on how to proceed. Therefore, although pluralism has its benefits, it also has its downsides.

In conclusion, America has seen a rise in pluralism in these past few years. Decisions are made by several groups of people with diverse opinions, and power is no longer centralized. This has enhanced democracy and given more individuals a voice in the running of the country. However, it has also caused a bitter rivalry between the contending powers. America should strive to find the right payoff between increasing pluralism and the costs that accompany this decision.

Works Cited

Janjuha-Jivraj, Shaheena. “Harnessing the power of diversity through pluralism.” Forbes, 2019, Web.

La Raja, Raymond. “Democratic party’s pluralism is both a strength and weakness.” The Conversation, 2018, Web.

Lawder, David. “Analysis: Trump changed how the U.S. trades – not necessarily as intended.” Reuters, 2020, Web.

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DemoEssays. "Ideology of Pluralism in America." December 11, 2022.