I’m not saying it’s not a republic. It is. It’s both. “Not a democracy” is like saying “it’s not a dog, it’s a beagle.” A republic is a kind of democracy. Was Reagan talking out of his butt when he wanted to make the world safe for democracy? The whole point of the meme is that when someone says something isn’t democratic or undermines democracy, instead of actually engaging in the issue, some other people love to toss out the “it’s not a democracy” thing as if that ends the discussion and they’ve made some brilliant point that automatically refutes whatever the other person was saying. It’s weak sauce.