Among its many consequences, globalization has also multiplied
and intensified identity-related social demands submitted to the democratic
political system. Political authorities are expected to promote homogeneous
moral communities, free of diversity and lifestyle pluralism. This has placed
institutions and public norms' secular or neutral nature under pressure. The
author condemns this state of affairs and develops a coherent, passionate defence
of secularism as an absolute virtue within the realm of institutions and public
choice. A political state authority that views value pluralism as a bad thing,
indeed as a political evil, ipso facto embodies a pure form of anti-democratic
and (to a yet greater degree) non-secular regime. The author believes that the
bond between secularism, institutions, and democratic choice is so tight that
the loss of the first element is a threat for the very ideal of democracy.
Salvatore Veca teaches Political Philosophy at the University Institute of Higher Studies in Pavia.
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