Fri, Oct 05, 2018 - Page 8 News List


Hold leaders accountable

A recent survey by the Taiwanese Public Opinion Foundation on public perception of President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) raises a central question about her presidency: Who are we Taiwanese to have elected a person who clearly lacks deep understanding of the crisis Taiwan faces regarding increasing infiltration, aggression and pressure from China (“Tsai’s approval rating drops to 31.2%,” Sept. 18, page 3).

Tsai has been in office for more than 800 days, but has failed her most important election promise: To reform the justice system.

The people chose her to lead Taiwan in a new direction, but what real action and result does the Transitional Justice Commission bring? It is absurd that the entire judicial system still remains under the control of Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) remnants.

Tsai has made it clear she is out of step with what the public wants: “Taiwan,” not the Republic of China (ROC), becoming a UN member, and a new constitution.

Alas, the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) has let us down; it is a shame no DPP lawmaker dares stand up to her and challenge her decree.

If ever there was a time for us to do some soul-searching, it is now. Tsai’s administration is no different than the KMT’s rule. Her election promises were not real; they were made merely to earn votes.

Her lack of courage, leadership and loyalty to Taiwan in the face of an ever-increasing show of force by Chinese war planes and naval activities surrounding Taiwan is deeply troubling.

We have a long way to go for Taiwan to realize its full potential as a self-governed, strong, secure and respected nation. It will take constant vigilance against corruption.

We must use our voting power in the coming elections to insist that our officials serve the people, and to hold them accountable to us.

Tien Cheng

Chicago, Illinois

English-language policy

Some people have expressed reservations about, or even open opposition to, Premier William Lai’s (賴清德) excellent and vitally important proposal to promote English as Taiwan’s second official language. There is no need for such negativity.

Carrying out this proposal in no way implies any diminution of the role and significance of Mandarin, or of the importance of any of the nation’s other native languages.

It is not anywhere near as monumental a task as some have tried to paint it. It is well within the means of this nation to achieve its basic goals and achieve them well.

All it needs is for other local governments to follow the policy of the Tainan City Government after then-Tainan mayor Lai in 2015 set up an Office of English as the Second Official Language.

Despite working with a limited budget, the office launched a wide range of initiatives that have proven highly effective in enhancing Tainan’s English environment and promoting the city’s internationalization.

It has provided children with much better opportunities for learning and using real-life English; has greatly improved the provision of English information online and upgraded all kinds of English signage; has translated self-government ordinances that are relevant to foreign residents and foreign investors; and has launched a scheme for certifying service providers, including hospitals and clinics, that are able to deliver their services in English (similar to the English Services Emblem program that the Research, Development and Evaluation Commission conducted until it was inexplicably dropped after being transferred to the Ministry of Education, and which ought to be revived).

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