Thu, Feb 05, 2009 - Page 8 News List

[LETTER]

Don’t honor a murderer

It is truly unconscionable for the administration of President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) to change the name plaque on National Taiwan Democracy Memorial Hall back to Chiang Kai-shek (蔣介石) Memorial Hall. I hope people in Taiwan will not allow this switch but will tell Ma and his diehard Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) followers: “Enough is enough.”

Vice Minister of Education Lu Mu-lin (呂木琳) said the decision was in accordance with the law and a resolution passed by the Legislative Yuan. But the public and the whole world know that these laws and perhaps others were passed by the tyrannical majority of KMT legislators, who are ignorant of history and, in my opinion, have some mental disorder.

The whole world knows Chiang was a dictator who massacred thousands of innocent people who were critical of his regime. Yet Taiwanese were forced to worship their murderer for decades as if he were their savior.

Imagine if Jewish people were forced to worship or otherwise commemorate Hitler?

I would like to remind Ma and his cohorts that in today’s world, if Chiang were alive, he would probably be charged with crimes against humanity.

Furthermore, Ma should know that Chinese leader Mao Zedong (毛澤東) listed Chiang as the people’s No. 1 war criminal. Chiang would not necessarily be welcome in China today.

Presidential Office Spokesman Wang Yu-chi (王郁琦) has said the name change by the Democratic Progressive Party administration was illegal.

My question to the Ma administration is this: Was Chiang’s slaughtering of thousands of innocent people legal? It must have been, because the government is still trying to defend Chiang and restore his infamous name at the hall. What twisted logic.

Furthermore, why did the Ma administration go back on its promise to hold a public forum on the name of the hall before changing it? The reason is simple: The administration could not tolerate dissenting opinions that might have jeopardized its decision.

I hope the opposition parties will shoulder the responsibility to educate the public by holding a series of forums or town hall meetings where politicians, academics and members of the public can participate, debate their opinions and make suggestions on a variety of issues, including the hall’s pending name change.

KRIS LIAO

San Francisco, California

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