Culture of Democracy in Poland: Past to Present
Poland's culture of democracy has been shaped by a long and complex history. Since the Middle Ages, Poland has existed as a country ruled by a feudal monarchy. However, towards the end of the 18th century, the Polish-Lithuanian Union broke up and the Constitution of 1791 was adopted, which was an important milestone in Polish history. This constitution laid the foundation for the idea of modern democracy in Poland.
However, Poland's independence ended in 1795 when the country was partitioned by its three neighbors, Russia, Prussia and Austria. Poland regained its independence in 1918 and was re-established as a Republic by the Constitution of 1921. During this period, Poland adopted many democratic reforms and moved towards a democratic form of government.
However, Poland's history of democracy was shaped by the Nazi occupation during World War II and the influence of the Soviet Union after the war. In 1989, the era of the "Fourth Republic" began, the year of democratic changes in Poland. During this period, Poland broke free from Soviet influence and moved rapidly towards democratic reforms.
Culture of Democracy in Poland Today
Today, Poland is governed as a parliamentary republic. Poland's culture of democracy embraces basic democratic principles such as a multi-party political system, an independent judiciary and freedom of expression. Regular elections determine the government and the Polish Parliament (Sejm and Senat) performs legislative functions.
However, in recent years there has been some debate and concern over the culture of democracy in Poland. The government that came to power in 2015 has, according to some critics, raised concerns about judicial independence and imposed restrictions on freedom of expression. Concerns have also been expressed about media ownership and independence.
The culture of democracy in Poland needs to be strengthened in areas such as public participation, civil society organizations and the protection of press freedom. Adherence to the basic principles of democracy and the maintenance of open debate are important for the continuation of Poland's democratic legacy.
In conclusion, Poland's culture of democracy is characterized by its rich historical heritage and commitment to democratic values. However, continuous efforts are needed to strengthen and protect democracy, as democracy is a fragile value that must always be protected.