2 out of 4 stars
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Restore Our Democracy by Werner Neff is an interesting look at democracy and politics, specifically within the United States of America. Werner Neff covers a lot of information in this short book. He reviews the history of democracy, back to Athens, Greece, and how democracy came to the United States - something all of us in the U.S. have studied at one time or another. However, this book takes a turn. The author acknowledges that the ideas behind and ideals of democracy are still relevant today. The United States, however, has been tormented by a plague of distracted politicians, crazy corporations, and (some) wealthy individuals who care not about the success and betterment of the country as a whole. The consequence of behaviors has led the U.S. to slowly lose its place as an authority figure throughout the world.
Subsequently, Werner Neff discusses how the United States came to its current place. For example, the author reviews the concept of freedom, a republic, forms of democracy, and important American documents, like the Bill of Rights. While it seems very technical and like any other history book, the book is also filled with the author's opinions. He makes sure to make his point known to readers as he discusses controversial issues, like gun ownership and hate groups. He also provides his own list of potential solutions to some problems we currently face.
All said and done, I found the book fascinating. While I learned many of these concepts as a child in the American educational system, I have not reviewed them as an adult. It shed a different light on these principles. Particularly, I found the idea of "ethical elections" quite interesting. In this section, the author discusses the 2018 Governor’s Election in Georgia. I had never heard of this incident, probably because it is in another state than mine. Either way, it is a good snapshot of something that happens rather frequently. You'll have to read it yourself, but I quite liked it.
On the other hand, one of the things I greatly disliked was the author's use of Wikipedia as a reference. Given the wealth of information on the internet, I wished the author would have used more scholarly sources to support their opinions. That said, the author does mention that he is a Swiss national. As such, I am unsure of their practices regarding references and what they are taught in school. I'm not sure if this is a regional idea or not.
I also was not a fan of the formatting of the book. Opinions were intermixed with educational information. I feel like it may flow better if the author talked about the educational information before explaining their own opinions.
Overall, I have to give this book 2 out of 4 stars. If I could give this book 2.5 stars, I would. As that is not the case, I am forced to give it two. This rating was influenced by the above and the grammatical errors found throughout. It was clear, concise, and filled with information. I found the book interesting and would recommend it to those who are politically minded. With a little more work, I think it could move up in the rankings.
Restore Our Democracy
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