Sun, Aug 05, 2012 - Page 8 News List

[ LETTER ]

Love, sincerity and politics

After recently observing on television the words and deeds of major political figures in Taiwan, I have come to doubt their value systems. It appears that politicians value only money, status, fame, power and narrow political interests.

1 Corinthians 13:1-2 in the Bible reads: “If I speak human or angels’ languages but do not have love, I am a sounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophesy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith so that I can move mountains but do not have love, I am nothing.”

One day, former Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) acting chairperson Chen Chu (陳菊), who is also Kaohsiung mayor, discussed visiting former president Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁). She indicated that she cared about him.

However, people have different ways of showing concern. There is little value in judging the way a person demonstrates concern. What is more important is whether they have love in their hearts. I want to ask Chen Chu — does her concern for the former president come from sincere love?

DPP Chairman Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) visited Chen Shui-bian in jail before the party chairman’s election. I cannot conclude whether he is sincere in his love for the former president, but his visit did involve some careful political considerations.

Before his visit, I published an article in a newspaper referring to Chen Shui-bian’s case as a political issue, not a legal issue. All Taiwanese should regard the incarceration of the former president as their own experience and should share his pain, humiliation and suffering.

After this article was published, Su reacted, visiting Chen Shui-bian the next afternoon. I was very moved. However, Su refused to sign a petition calling for Chen Shui-bian’s “medical parole.”

At the time of his refusal, Su said: “Doing is more important than saying.”

This petition is a simple act taken in a pure frame of mind. I believe if a person truly loves Taiwan, he or she should be involved in this petition. I challenge Su to tell us Taiwanese why he refused to participate in this petition.

Another political figure, former DPP chairperson Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文), taught her university students to cultivate a spirit of competition. However, in my old-fashioned value system, it is better to encourage students to study hard, to enrich themselves and then to share their experiences with others.

I suggest that some values from Japan be absorbed. I am not saying everything from Japan is good, but there are some virtues from Japan that I think Taiwan could learn from. Before World War II, I was educated in Japan and I am very grateful that I had this opportunity. The school mottoes of the Japan Women’s University, founded by renowned Japanese educator Jinzo Naruse were “thorough conviction, spontaneous creation” and “joint service.” What these mottoes stress is the act of maintaining faith without depending on others, pursuing your own life and helping others. Jinzo Naruse taught us to sacrifice ourselves to help others, to love our country and to adhere to our principles.

His teachings have spiritually sustained me my whole life. In addition to the love of Christ, these teachings have allowed me to live a valuable and meaningful life filled with gratitude and noble values.

Education in Taiwan today is polluted by money, status, fame, power, special interests and selfishness. These qualities create people who are selfish, prone to flattery and lack a sense of justice. These qualities have also resulted in the huge mess that is modern-day Taiwan.

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