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自由民主之谜

普林斯顿——大约20年前,政治评论员法里德·扎卡里亚曾撰文预言所谓“非自由民主的崛起”,他在文中不无担忧地指出红极一时的独裁者很少考虑到法治和公民权利。扎卡里亚提出通过自由公正选举产生的政府仍有可能经常性地侵犯公民的基本权利。

从扎卡里亚那篇文章后,非自由民主与其说是意外还不如说是常态。据自由之家统计,全球超60%的国家实行民主选举制度——即各党派在定期选举中竞争掌权——而20世纪80年代上述比例仅为40%。但这些民主国家大多无法为民众提供平等的法律保护。

通常来讲,承受狭隘政策行为冲击的往往是少数群体(按民族、宗教、语言或地区划分)。但审查、迫害或非法监禁的危险形形色色的政府反对派都无法逃避。

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