Inclusion and Democracy

Inclusion and Democracy

Inclusion and Democracy

Inclusion and Democracy

Synopsis

'Young advances a nuanced way of thinking about the problem of political exclusion, and its potential remedies... Young's book is a timely intervention urging an enlargement of political vision. Inclusion and Democracy is an important text, which will rightly generate a deal of provocative debate.' -Radical PhilosophyIn the long awaited follow-up to Justice and the Politics of Difference, Iris Marion Young- one of the world's leading political philosophers- makes major and controversial contribution to the debates about democracy in a multicultural society. The book considers the ideals of political inclusion and exclusion and recommends ways of engaging in democratic politics in a more inclusive way. It includes a discussion of class, race and gender bias in democratic processes, and asks whether in an era of greater global interaction, democratic institutions should become more global

Excerpt

In January 1997 I stood on street corners in Pittsburgh soliciting signatures for a referendum petition. the temperature hovered around 15 degrees Fahrenheit in the sun. I persisted in this self-punishment because I knew that scores of other people were spread over the city also collecting signatures. the petition called for a question to be put on the May ballot asking voters to approve the creation of a Police Civilian Review Board. State law allowed us a mere six weeks to collect the required 11,000 signatures of currently registered Pittsburgh voters. Petitioners were heartened to find that many we asked were already apprised of the issue; many signed our petition, including more than a few uniformed police officers. By the closing date we had 16,000 names.

The referendum campaign came after more than four years of citizen agitation about issues of police conduct towards citizens. For African Americans in Pittsburgh these issues were always simmering, but had come to the boil with the publicized shooting in the back of a youth in a police chase. the Coalition to Counter Hate Groups joined with the newly formed Citizens for Police Accountability to develop a proposal for a Review Board. At the same time the Pittsburgh chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union began documenting cases of alleged police abuse or harassment. Gay and lesbian organizations linked with the agitation and publicized some incidents of police encounters with gay men that they claimed were abusive. the local and national press covered the story of the death of an African American in a Pittsburgh suburb while in police custody after being pulled over for an alleged traffic violation.

With the issue of police accountability so centrally in the public eye, the campaign for a Civilian Review Board had gained momentum. Citizens for Police Accountability organized several meetings attended by Pittsburghers. Soon the proposed ordinance was under discussion by the Pittsburgh City Council. the Council sponsored a series of public hearings in several neighbourhoods attended by hundreds of people representing organizations as diverse as the Fraternal Order of Police, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, and the Pittsburgh Mediation Center. the chief of police argued against the proposed Review Board on the grounds that the Police Department had a competent internal complaints and

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