Meaning of Authoritarianism

The authoritarianism appears when an authority abuses its power. The concept also refers to the government system or regime that exceeds the exercise of its authority.

For example: “People are tired of the authoritarianism of the government”, “If the president of the company continues to act with authoritarianism, the workers will begin to rebel”, “Authoritarianism can be reversed with adherence to the Constitution and respect for values democratic ”.

It is important to mention that authoritarianism is a way of exercising authority that transcends the government system. A dictatorship will always be authoritarian since with its mere permanence in power it violates the laws and the popular will. A democratic government, however, can also exercise authoritarianism.

A democratic president who governs through decrees, uses state media to criticize opponents, does not dialogue with journalists and represses social protests with the use of the security forces is a president who exercises his power with authoritarianism.

Let’s look at some of the salient characteristics of authoritarianism in government in a concise way:

* The people are forced to deposit all power over a leader, so that the government becomes unipersonal. This figure usually has a special charisma that helps him gain the trust of the people before taking the position he aspires to;

* There is usually no well-defined ideology, to which is added the suppression of all political parties. Authoritarianism responds to a series of individual interests or of the economic sectors that enjoy control and power, both economic and political;

* to stay in power, authoritarian governments often promote terror, that is, act without limits to intimidate the people and block any attempt at protest or liberation;

* The army is very present in the day-to-day life of an authoritarian government, both on public roads and in schools, hospitals and government buildings, always reminding citizens that they should not take a wrong step;

* One of the less direct forms of violence of authoritarianism is the manipulation of the media, which is used for political propaganda and the exaltation of the leader.

Beyond politics, authoritarianism can appear in social relationships led by individuals who are not in the same position in terms of power. A person is authoritative with his spouse and children when he makes all family decisions on his own, without listening to anyone. The owner of a company, for his part, exercises authoritarianism if he does not allow his employees to express themselves on working conditions or on issues inherent to the operation of the company.

Authoritarianism always brings a series of negative feelings in those who must bear it, and among them are frustration and helplessness. When someone makes decisions that directly affect another person without giving them the opportunity to participate or have an opinion, the balance of freedom and justice tilts unfavorably and, like all imbalances, it is only a matter of time before it results in a conflict. outbreak.

Just as sooner or later peoples rise up against dictatorial governments to demand the fulfillment of their rights, the removal of leaders and the beginning of an era of transparency and respect, something similar happens in private circles when someone is subjected to authoritarianism.. The anguish generated by submission and the humiliations that she must endure gradually feed a time bomb that, one day, may become a resource to achieve freedom.