A sad day for democracy
\nIt has been reported that Taipei Mayor Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) suggested that cities and counties controlled by the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) boycott the referendum proposed by President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁).
\nApparently the KMT believes that, as a major political party, it can compel members who are elected officials to disobey laws with which it disagrees (as opposed to those declared void by legal process).
\nThis is indeed a sad day for democracy in Taiwan. It is the kind of thing that would happen in a one-party system, such as China's, but not in a democracy.
\nThe rule of law governs democracies, not the rule of tyranny. Citizens and workers can express their opinions and can carry out boycotts. Elected officials must do their jobs according to the law, or they will be dismissed or impeached. The only means by which elected officials can address a law with which they do not agree is to follow the legal procedures to have the law changed, whether by legal challenge in court or by amendment or other legal process, or to have its enforcement stayed until its legality has been determined.
\nTo suggest that all KMT officials should simply refuse to obey the law, and boycott a validly called election (or referendum), calls for anarchy. That would also be a sad day for democracy.
\nI am shocked that a man considered a prime candidate to become president would call for such a lawless measure. What measure of a man is it if he cannot resist the voice of corruption and tyranny, even if it is whispered to him by his colleague, the man in charge? Can he not resist that which he knows is corrupt and wrong?
\nNo one is above the law -- neither KMT Chairman Lien Chan (
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