Nigeria teaches us a lesson in democracy

We Americans can learn something about democracy from the people of Nigeria, where I recently joined a few hundred international observers to witness that nation’s presidential election. It was an extraordinarily moving experience to watch democracy being born, and a reminder of what we enjoy as Americans but increasingly take for granted.

Unlike Nigeria’s election in 2007, which was so violent and corrupt that observers called it “the worst they had ever seen anywhere in the world,” observers reported that this year’s presidential election was fair, transparent and mostly peaceful. For the Nigerians I talked to on election day, this was important for the world to know.