978-1-933116-73-0 / 9781933116730

American Democracy in Peril: Eight Challenges to America's Future


Publisher:CQ Press



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About the book:

William Hudson's critical and provocative text urges readers not just to think about how American democracy functions, but also to examine why American democracy has become what it is today. Hudson identifies eight major challenges to the strength of the political system, directly laying out the ways in which these developments erode the very foundations of American democracy: Does judicial activism eliminate the voice of the people in American policymaking? To what extent should Americans sacrifice their civil liberties in the interest of national security? Does the "American Dream" still exist given the degree of inequality in the United States?

Ever challenging Americans' apathy or antipathy of politics, Hudson provides critical, but balanced recommendations for reform, while emphasizing that the strength of the U.S. political system rests on the ability to respond successfully to these pressing issues. Important new coverage in this fifth edition includes:

  • The disparity between low- and high-income residents of the Gulf Coast that was thrown into vivid relief after Hurricane Katrina, revealing deeply embedded social, economic, and political inequality in the United States.
  • Judicial appointment politics that allow the president to promote ideological values in an undemocratic manner.
  • Stunted "sound bite" media coverage and candidate-centered campaigning that discourage Americans from deliberating and exercising their voices on national policy concerns.
  • The Bush administration's approaches to fighting terror and upholding democracy in the world that may, in fact, jeopardize democratic values.

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