Religion and Political Pluralism

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Pluralism can be defined as the dispute that the best form of a political system for the United States would be one in which a multitude of competing interest groups would be given recognition. It believes that the power should be divided among many groups rather than one central authority, and the government should be looked upon as an intermediary which negotiates in place of dictating. Beneath the category of pluralism lays cultural and political pluralism; each entertaining their own individual ideas of how government should be run. When each group maintains its’ own identity and have not acculturated into society, it is viewed as cultural pluralism. “These groups might speak different languages, practice different religions, and have different value systems. The groups are part of the same society and might even live in adjacent areas, but in some ways, they live in different worlds.” (Healey 58) This promotes a society in which those of different ethnicities can continue their cultural practices all while coexisting peacefully with the dominant group. Native Americans and the Amish are both superior examples of how cultural pluralism works. The Native Americans continue to reside on their isolated reservations and speak their traditional language without being a bother to dominating society. The Amish also maintain their customary life style organized around farming and keep their customs separate from the dominances as well.

Although the terms cultural and political pluralism might lead one to believe they are similar, they are actually contradictory terms. As referenced above, with cultural pluralism, groupings tend to stay together. With political pluralism, the government is one where a country’s politics are defined by how the people need and want things to be. This type of government is very similar to the United States.

Political pluralism might impact societal values, norms and belief systems in that concessions might have to be made...
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