Harmonization of Democratic and judicial virtues

One of the reasons to prefer a democratic regime over other forms of government is that it enables citizens to develop political and civic virtues by engaging constantly on public debate and collective deliberation. Strong judicial activism may impair the development of those virtues. Even if judges are fair and their arguments sound, by taking away significant decisions from democratic procedures they may disrupt the development of a virtuous character of political actors. Just as democracy is concerned with the excellence of the character of those that interact within the political sphere, judicial procedures are also a scenery in which judges are able to develop virtues. In the following paper I claim that there needs to be a harmonization between the virtues of democratic citizenship and judicial decision making. Both aretaic dimensions are interrelated and should aim to be mutually reinforcing.