For those contemplating some form of participation in a Government sponsored petitioning process available for citizens to use, be forewarned:
For example... petitioning the U.S. Presidency:
An "official" response to your petition, regardless of how many signatures show up on your petition, will be one in which the prevailing administration interprets or frames the information in-line with their own efforts. The administration will claim it has completed, is in the process of finishing, is working along similar lines, or has has met with legislative stumbling blocks. There currently is no provision in the so-called Democratic Land of the Free and Home of the brave,--- similar to that afforded British Citizens, (in which 10,000 signatures make the petition eligible for debate in the House of Commons... but in no way guarantees that it will be) whereby a debate in the Legislative Branch (Congress) is assured if a certain number of American citizen signatures is acquired for any given petition.
In a government such as the U.S., even if the office of the presidency permits petitions, this does not in any way mean you are petitioning the whole of the government. Petitioning a grievance to the office of the President is not a petition to the U.S. Congress nor the U.S. Judicial branch. Please note that citizens are not, by law, given the privilege of petitioning individual government departments. Though you are permitted an ability to make a complaint just as you might complain to a company about a product or employee, such a process is not viewed in terms of being a petition.
Do not expect the office of the President to supply you with an answer to something involving one of the other branches of government. The office of the President can not speak for the other branches of government though the present petitioning process is that in which the Presidency addresses the Right of the People to petition the government as if it were a Monarchy with the sole discretion and providence to do so. The current petitioning process is predicated on the formula by which the people must acquire a certain proportion of signatures as if the petition were a document comparable to a Declaration for Independence upon which the signatures of those claiming to represent the people were affixed. The process of petition is carried out in a formality reminiscent of an Independence Declaration and plays out a similar role of being arrogantly dismissive through a proscribed methodology of interpretation which best befits its political logic regardless of what the people may think. And if the people disagree with the pronouncement, they are left with no further means of seeking a redress of grievance except through a process of conducting a physical protest from which is a series of escalations inviting civil disobedience, confrontations with law enforcement, and anarchic revolt that may entail the use of blood-letting violence as an expression of effecting a Revolution.
The petitioning process is drafted by a mentality which encourages the public's use of procedures requiring an escalation of protest because the petitioning process is not a true Democratic exercise in permitting the public to have a voice... and to have the collectivity of that voice be legislated into a law of the land. The people are denied the Due Process for effecting its collective Will without a go-between called "Representation" that embodies the religious tenet of humanity being "in his image". This clearly represents the government's usage of a "Representative" governing formula as an infusion of a religious precept which does not provide for a true separation between church and state.
It is an infusion that also is practiced in the occurrence of a failed criminal justice system involving a ludicrous and sham "Re-habilitation" effort which dismisses the clarity of vision of those who have time and again remarked that if such a program to prevent recidivism is to be effective, it must first recognize that the presumed initial social "habilitation" of many individuals did not take place. You can not hope to solve the complex problems of sociability when there was far too little of it to begin with. Such individuals require costly measures of social retraining with heavy doses of psychological intervention which must compete with a system of social governance perceived as a legalized criminal itself. Even the very name of "penitentiary" has evolved out of the religious notion of someone being penitent.
The petitioning process, just as the processes of legislative representation and the foundation upon which the criminal justice system has been formulated, including everyday notes of commerce called money (i.e. the "in god we trust" phrase); are examples that a definitive church and state separation has not been achieved and continue to contribute to the inability of Legislators achieving an effective resolution to multiple social problems. The tethering of a government-laden society to the influence of religious precepts acts as a deterrent to solving social problems that do not involve some action which increases the public's dependency and suffering; such as through a persistent and perniciously virulent socialized conveyor belt system of inter-generational poverty-driven welfare— on an authority wanting to continue in the tradition of exercising ceremonialized forms of charity because this too is a religious precept that some define analytically in a general way as a neurosis or more deprecatively as schizophrenia... (defined as an ambivalence predicated on the view that they are damned if the do and damned if they don't, but pursue that which is deemed most beneficial to secular interests as a token concession to legislative entreaties to assist in, at least, giving the impression of wanting to firmly address the social problems wrought by the socialized "Institution of poverty" that they have a hand in perpetuating; but would no doubt argue that without the assistance of the church the problems coincident with poverty would be worse... and worse they are).
There is a conflict of interests between church and state because the church wants to "manage" poverty as a means of encouraging a wide-spread attendant and obeisant observance of religion, while an honest government seeks to eradicate it and not pander to public-immolating (sacrificial) religious practices. Such religious perceptions are based on the faulty syllogistic (logical) notion that without poverty there would be no need for charity and without charity there would be no need for religion. Hence, it is of value for the church to participate in the creation and support of "manageable solutions" to social problems, like a pharmaceutical company wanting to insure that there is a sustained need for people to believe in a product it is selling as a cure... to alleviate pain and suffering which re-occurs time and again and is called "natural" in order to predispose the public into accepting the occurrence as not being artificially induced by those seeking to profit, in one way or another, off of misery.
The present "Petition the Government" process in America (and Great Britain) is a joke, even though with respect to the one in America; it is an attempt to mitigate the problems the early colonists encountered when trying to petition the British Government under King George the III. Both processes permit citizens to get a gripe off their chest, blame their fellow citizens for not getting involved, and allow the government to maintain the status quo as it deems fit. Both countries are using a petitioning process based on criteria developed with a mindset focused on out-moded historical references in order to give the impression both countries have an "open door" policy. What they don't tell you is that the door has an exit sign posted on both sides reminiscent of a revolving door or carny (carnival worker) controlled merry-go-round. Don't be fooled by the WELCOME mat nor the shiny door handle and/or knocker. The first is made of straw and the other two are still made of cheap brass that's been polished to a fine glitter by indentured servants called citizens.
In America, as elsewhere, the petitioning process should be designed so that:
In Great Britain, even if the government decides to provide replies to petitions that have not met a certain quota of signatures, don't expect some Earth shattering reply. Don't expect to receive any other type of response except that which signifies an acknowledgment of your presence as a petitioner. If the petition is not something that can be used as a political issue to assist the motives of one or more politicians (or their friends who may not be in government), you will remain as an "E.T." [alien] in your own country. (You get an E for effort and a T for trying which may buy you some personal satisfaction, but it's difficult to spend such allowances in most places.)
Go ahead. Petition away. Educate yourself on both the types of petitions being drawn up and the responses petitions routinely receive from the government.
This is from the U.S. Declaration of Independence:
In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people....
While the "oppressions" of today are different than those during the time of the Declaration's creation, oppressions exist nonetheless as do the multifarious character of the injuries.
All government petition processes should involve the provision of reaching an automatic ability to be brought before the public for a vote. For example, every petition, if the quantity of say, 25,000 signatures is reached, would automatically be placed on a yearly ballot to be voted on (in the same year as the petition) or at the very latest, in the month following the year in which the signatures were acquired. If the provision passes on the will of the people, it would then become a law.