People can consider the statues of historical figures on school campuses as just stone and not care about their meaning, Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) said yesterday, adding that he is planning a way to deal with the issue “properly.”
Ko made the remarks at the launch of the Taipei City Government’s annual municipal administration summer camp for students. The camp’s first session is attended by undergraduate and graduate students.
A student from National Chiao Tung University said he used to see Chiang Kai-shek’s (蔣介石) bronze statue at the Taipei Municipal Jianguo High School’s front gate when he was a student there, and asked Ko what the city government would do regarding such statues on campuses and in government institutions to ensure transitional justice.
Photo: Chang Yi-chen, Taipei Times
“That is a sharp question to ask in front of all these journalists,” Ko jokingly said. “There are many statues of historical figures in Taiwan, such as Sun Yat-sen (孫中山), Wu Chih-hui (吳稚暉), Chiang, Lin Sen (林森) and Yu You-jen (于右任), so I have been thinking about whether I should deal with the statues altogether, or only the ones of Chiang.”
Ko said he has been reading Buddhism’s Diamond Sutra and was inspired by the four manifestations of self, adding: “It is a world full of labels, meaning that you label an object you see and react to the object because of that label.”
“Honestly, why do you not just see them [the statues] as stone?” Ko said, quoting the Zen Buddhist teaching: “It is not the wind or the flag that is moving, it is your heart that is moving.”
“The meaning of the statue is given to it by the viewer, but the question is why do they care so much about it?” Ko asked.
“After being mayor for a while, I realized that most people only pursue a stable life with ensured meals every day, they do not care so much about Taiwanese independence or unification with China, nor about the pan-green or pan-blue political camps,” he said.
COSTLY TECH FAILURE: More than 25,000 files for nearly 8,000 students from 81 schools were lost when system administrators updated a server, the Ministry of Education said The academic records of 7,854 high-school students have been lost due to a hard-drive failure, the Ministry of Education said yesterday. The records were being stored at National Chi Nan University, which was commissioned by the ministry’s K-12 Education Administration to host a computer server of student portfolios that universities could access to evaluate their applications. Under a program introduced in 2019 for high-school students starting that year, students are to create portfolios to be used for university applications, which include their grades, extracurricular activities and other information related to their character and achievements. System administrators discovered that files were missing when rebooting
921 EARTHQUAKE: The magnitude 7.3 quake left 2,456 people dead and 10,718 injured, while 53,661 houses were fully destroyed and 53,024 houses damaged The Central Weather Bureau yesterday received about 50,000 views on Facebook after it posted the data that it collected on Sept. 21, 1999, when the nation was devastated by a magnitude 7.3 earthquake. The data showed that the 921 Earthquake hit the nation at 1:47am, with the epicenter being 7km southwest of the bureau’s quake detection center in Nantou County’s Yuchi Township (魚池) at a depth of 8km. The quake left 2,456 people dead and 10,718 injured, while 53,661 houses were fully destroyed and 53,024 houses damaged, with the cost of the damage estimated at NT$300 billion (US$10.8 billion at the current
British newspaper The Mail on Sunday reported that Prince Charles met with Bruno Wang (汪家興), a Taiwanese fugitive who describes himself as a Chinese philanthropist and donated ￡500,000 (US$683,522) to the prince’s charity, the Prince’s Foundation. The newspaper reported that Wang is wanted in Taiwan on charges related to money laundering and being a fugitive from justice, allegations he denies, and drew comparisons between Wang and the Russian banker Dmitry Leus. Investigation and cooperation with foreign authorities have found that Bruno Wang’s father, Andrew Wang (汪傳浦), had stashed proceeds from a scandal involving the procurement of Lafayette frigates in 61 bank accounts,
Taiwan is to begin administering the Pfizer-BioNTech (BNT) COVID-19 vaccine to high-school students on Wednesday, and the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) has advised that strenuous exercise be avoided for two weeks after innoculation. Recipients should watch for symptoms of myocarditis and pericarditis — inflammation of the heart muscle and outer lining of the heart respectively — within 28 days of the BNT vaccination, Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center, said on Sunday. Symptoms include pain, pressure or tightness in the chest, shortness of breath, feelings of having a fast-beating, fluttering, or pounding heart, fainting and