Politics is the art of societal decision making and the distribution of power in a society. Permeating throughout all aspects of life, no human is exempt from political processes. Politics are crucial for societal, economic and political progress and development. Here are 10 reasons why politics is important and how they influence human life in all shapes and forms.
#1. Helps people to understand their rights
Politics acts as the foundation for the rights of humans and sets the groundwork for ethics and morality. Without politics, humans would not have a tangible benchmark and understanding of what they are entitled to as citizens of a country or society and would lead to human rights violations. By having legal documents and political customs that delineate the rights of humans, people can become aware of what they are entitled to in the political and social landscape.
#2. Affects every aspect of daily lives
From paying GST during grocery shopping to driving a car to work, politics permeates in every aspect of human life. As governments and political entities hold the power to create laws and customs that govern our daily lives, it is important for people to understand that politics is the central figure in determining societal and political processes. Knowing this can help people determine what the best course of action to take when problems arise.
#3. Helps people to become informed voters
Voting plays an important role in politics, as citizens hold the power to change the organizational structure of governments and the direction society moves forward towards. To understand what benefits and disadvantages each political party brings to their campaign, citizens have to do individual research and become informed of basic political processes before casting their ballot.
#4. Provides a voice and platform to people
Politics provides a direct platform for people to voice their societal concerns and priorities. While some citizens may be content with the political order of a society, some may feel marginalized and disadvantaged in a society and may begin to protest for greater and radical change. This ability to be able to freely voice opinions is a crucial aspect of politics and highlights the power of politics in mobilizing people to create meaningful change.
#5. Determines laws and decisions
Governmental and political institutions are the primary decision-makers when determining societal laws and ordinances. These decisions can range from major international issues we face today, such as climate change and social inequality, to smaller and domestic rules such as the types of books students are assigned to read in public schools or the number of bike lanes in a neighborhood.
#6. Governs society (constitution)
Political institutions hold the highest level of legitimate power when governing a society. As governments are responsible for laying the groundwork for all political, economic and social activities, they have the ability to govern society in a way that suits the political and social context of a society. Constitutions of a country are often deemed as the founding document of a country’s political landscape, as such legal documents govern the activities of governmental institutions and keep their power in check.
#7. Enacts change in society
Although politics is grounded in tradition and orthodox thought, politics is an ever-changing entity that adapts to different political, cultural and economic contexts. As politics acts as a societal key to unlock new ideas and change for a society, it is crucial for policy makers and governments alike to adapt to the political landscape and enact meaningful and effective change that serves the best interests of the community.
#8. Establishes how power is controlled
Politics is often cited as an all-encompassing mechanism that controls the behaviour of people and influence the outcomes of events. The distribution and the extent of political power is often determined by governments and political institutions alike and equips certain groups of people to control policies, cultures and customs of a society. Oftentimes, governments have a complex system of rules that constrain this power to ensure that political power is not abused and used for the sole interest of one actor.
#9. Creates a sense of identity
As politics covers every aspect of human life, humans are likely to resonate with certain political issues more than others. By fostering a sense of identity with a particular political issue, this creates a greater sense of civic responsibility and engagement, which in turn helps to voice underrepresented groups within society. This sense of identity also plays into creating communities where people can express their opinions and share their ideas of what governments should do to better accommodate their citizens.
#10. Influences the way people think and behave
Human attitudes and behaviors are influenced by politics as people are constantly interacting with politics on a daily basis. The way a government distributes funds or deal with proposed laws affect the day to day lives of people, which ultimately influences the attitudes and actions of people. Consequently, politics holds the power to change public sentiment and attitudes towards political phenomena, and this must be taken into consideration during political decision making.