What is Politics?
Politics is a Greek terminology Πολιτικά meaning ‘affairs of the cities’ skilfully coiled to realize group decisions. Apart from being a science, politics is an art used by the focused to influence the distribution of resources among those they are guiding. Every human being is by nature political. Something is categorized ‘political’ when affects the way people live in groups and how they make decisions. Politics is about making agreements between peoples so that harmoniously put together determine their lifestyle. It for this purpose that governments are formed. Politics is a process that schemes to fulfil relevant interests.
What is politics all about?
One classic answers to this question are about who gets what, when and how. This makes politics settling contestation over the distribution of material goods. For any politics to stay relevant it must have and a clear ideology. Politics influences the distribution of resources specifies positions and influences culture. Politics is a battle of ideas through which participants shape narrative, generate values and beliefs. For politics to make sense it has to follow an ethical code.
Politics needs ethics
Political ethics is the practice of making moral judgements about political action focusing on ethics of office which deals with public officials and the methods they use while the second is the ethics of policy that deals with laws. When policies and laws are ignored, then disaster issues. Reliable politics needs faith in God to influence political policies and laws.
Politics is meant for a good life
Politics refers to leadership science which is an art of governing people in a given situation. Serious politics is active at levels of government and state which necessarily involves competition. Politics becomes ethical when it recognizes the role of God in guiding, managing serving all He has created most especially by upholding the dignity and welfare of human persons; following dictates of a formed conscience, and promoting the common good.
Politics is guided by a vision
The political vision guides citizens to do things that make governance coherent. Politics being a social science necessarily operates in an environment easily identifiable with a society which is complex due to several diverse parts that constitute it. Each part tends to be sovereign due to unique social spheres that are continuously influencing it. At the base of every society is a family which is the ethos of the political fibre because of its being origin of all human social relations. Since society functions organically, it may be compared to a healthy plant from which good politics can be parallel to good fruits. The good political system provides a conducive environment for a healthy and progressive society.
What we need today’s politics
It is the mission of every citizen to participate maturely in all forms of relevant in party politics. When citizens can engage freely in their national and international politics, the outcome is peace, prosperity and development. For this to happen, any government in place has the obligation of training the citizens how to love and respect politics. Government is obliged by God to build mutual relationships across the general public instead of emphasizing party and tribal lines. Good enough the holy scriptures of any religion provide personalities and dynamics of servant leadership. One who loves God will necessarily love people. Today the game-changer most especially is African politics is that citizens are influenced and encouraged to participate in political decision-making rather than just commentating or criticizing from the sidelines.
Balanced politics has three duties to perform
The first is to draw boundaries between different social spheres to avoid social conflict. The second is to defend individual domestic essential elements to minimize the dehumanization of members. The third is to persuade separate spheres of society to support the State most especially when it comes to upholding legitimate functions. Good politics reminds citizens that they must honour their promises while maintaining national unity and integrity. True politics being faith-friendly acts as an avenue through which useful ideology is channelled. Freedom of worship minimizes fundamentalism and sustains national stability. Where politics is sound; atheism shies away. Good politics assists citizens to reason with a formed and informed conscience which is good for decision making.
What is required of our politics is not promises but the implementation of a strategically planned political agenda. People are diverse in the knowledge, race, religion and gender but all converge when it comes to living a good life. Politics need to guarantee that society flourishes progressively while following an objective vision. This is possible when there are political aspirants are willing to see, judge and act. Africans needs politicians who are models of excellence instead of the orators who talk a lot of good points but fail to implement. All citizens need to be convinced that the destiny of their countries is in their hands. What is needed now is practical politics which incidentally many politicians don’t have. To eliminate violence, bribery and corruption from African politics we need smart political candidates that are focused and impeccable.
Fr. Paulino Mondo