In today’s modern world of ours, human beings live within states that do not only differentiate them from one another politically but also strive, at least in theory, to facilitate them to benefit from the positive aspects of social and cooperative life. States evolved in human history as the need for organized life. The requirements of human beings developed in such a way that it was necessary to divert human life towards a political entity. Whatever may be the reason of the inception of organized life its basic incentive has been to provide human beings their rights, bring them bliss and contentment and secure them from discrimination and disorder. However, it is debatable on whether these incentives have been achieved by different states that exist in modern world.
In a state there are two very integral elements – the government and the governed. The government is the body in a state that is responsible for the management and administration of state affairs. There are different forms of government based on different political systems. Throughout human history there have been many forms of government that have been experienced by human beings; however, the most modern one and the one with most support in modern world is the democratic government. The democratic government, in theory, is basically chosen by the people themselves through their votes in election process. Even within the democratic government there may be different forms; nonetheless, the basic nature of the government remains the same – it is elected by the people.
The democratic government in a state is tested much and it is one of the most accountable governments as it is elected by the will of the majority. Moreover, the democratic government has to be effective as well, as after every definite period of time it has to be re-elected by the votes of the people. If it is not able to perform well, it is bound to lose authority. There has been much discussion in the political history regarding the form, nature and characteristics of the government and in modern political history there has been much analysis regarding that of the democratic government but the other factor has not been discussed much and that is the nature and characteristics of the governed.
It is really important to discuss the governed as they participate to a large extent in the formation of government in modern states. There are certain characteristics that must be there in them so as to have better society. As in the state, both the elements are highly interdependent on each other; therefore, both have their roles to play. Moreover, the governed are not just simple masses that have nothing to say as a response to the nature and characteristics of the government. In earlier states, this could happen to a certain extent but not in the modern era.
The masses in a state must be educated and aware because both education and awareness would make them understand the society and their status, roles, rights and responsibilities in it. Though education is debatable, awareness is indispensable. Awareness is majorly based on experience and open-mindedness. Though it is very difficult to achieve awareness without education, it is not impossible.
The governed must also be vigilant and must have an active part in the affairs of the state. They must not be dumb and deaf subjects as in that way their rights would be easily violated. There are political scientists who believe that the rulers are basically the people who gain authority in order to defend their own interests. They are not always interested in what the common masses get; rather their attentions are diverted more towards their economic benefits. Therefore, the masses must be vigilant to identify the policies of the government that are not intended to bring prosperity to them. They have every right to fight for their rights politically and must make sure that their rights are not violated in any way. In that manner they would be able to stop the rulers from using the authority only for their personal benefits.
Political consciousness is another important quality that the masses must develop so as to comprehend the developments and the changes in the political system. Through such a consciousness they would also be able to gauge the policies of the government as per the political demands. Furthermore, they would gain the capacity of strengthening the political institutions and enrich the political culture with democratic and positive elements. They would, at the same time, be able to exert for positive political changes through their voting power, the tendency to change, participation in political affairs and, at most, through democratic demonstrations and protests.
Countries like Afghanistan would also require concentrating on the characteristics of the governed as well. Unfortunately, the common masses in Afghanistan have not been able to gain the attentions. They still lack basic requirements of life and suffer from lack of awareness and consciousness. Therefore, their roles are very limited in Afghan society and mostly the rulers rule the country as per their will. Even if the rulers have the policies that are detrimental for Afghan people and Afghan society and are contradictory to the wellbeing of the masses, they do not face much opposition as the masses are not able to identify them and insist on the changes through political means.