Taichung Municipal Fengyuan High School has come under fire for a live simulation staged for its Terrorism and Anti-Terrorism course, in which students were asked to divide into groups and engage in combat armed with gel blasters.
A video on the Internet forum Baoliao Commune showed the losing team standing against a wall and being “executed” by the victors.
The Liberty Times (the sister newspaper of the Taipei Times) reported that the event took place last year as part of a national defense education program.
The exercise seems excessive and questionable, even though a former student said that participation was voluntary.
What is the point of this simulation?
While the nation’s education system has often been criticized as overly focused on academia and not very practical, there are many other more useful and relevant simulations that a school could organize outside of study time — such as wilderness survival or simulations of real working environments.
While gel blasters are touted as safe, nontoxic and biodegradable, they do cause pain.
In the video, students are seen rubbing their wounds, while one lifts his shirt to display a rash on his back.
The blasters are also known to cause damage if someone is hit in the eye — last year, a victim was treated for eye injuries after a random “drive-by” gel blaster shooting in Australia.
New laws have been enacted in Australia: It is now illegal in Queensland state to shoot someone without permission and those who do face a penalty of three to seven years in prison.
While there is nothing wrong with having fun with gel blasters if all participants agree to it, wear protection and fully understand the potential risks — just like paintball, boxing, judo or any combative sport — using them as a part of a national defense class, and adding a disturbing execution simulation at the end, is inappropriate.
The students being “executed” in the video were wearing regular school clothes without any protective gear.
There is no longer any possible scenario in Taiwan in which such a simulation would be relevant, so why revive disturbing scenes reminiscent of the rebellions against the Qing Dynasty or the Japanese, or the White Terror era in a school setting?
What is it supposed to teach the students, besides that the losers deserve no mercy and should be brutally murdered?
Fortunately, the school has agreed that the class was inappropriate — although it took an alumnus to post a video online for this decision to be reached.
The school principal has said that the classes have been canceled, and the gel blasters and other equipment removed from the school, but denied that the blasters could have caused any harm to the students, despite them not wearing any protection during the execution exercise.
It is a good thing that the alumnus spoke out and the class has been canceled.
More people need to speak out about these types of ridiculous school activities so that they can be consigned to the past.
Former US secretary of state Mike Pompeo delivered a very short, succinct and accurate speech in regards to the US relationship with Taiwan in November last year. This information has again angered Beijing, which has stated that the existence of a free and independent Taiwan will not be tolerated. Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman Wang Wenbin (汪文斌) has said Pompeo’s language is interfering with the sovereignty of China. Pompeo was stating the facts. Taiwan has never been a part of the People’s Republic of China or the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), therefore it is not a territory of China. The
Where is the world’s disposition today vis-a-vis the Chinese Communist Party (CCP)? Is it similar to that in Munich, September 1938 when Europe’s powers appeased Adolf Hitler over the “Sudetenland,” despite existing treaty commitments? In other words, analogous to the failure to recognize the PRC’s aggressive intent and to mobilize in response to serial CCP outrages, e.g., Tiananmen and South China Sea; suppression of Hong Kong in violation of a treaty agreement; the internment and genocide of the Uighurs, and its complicity in the death of nearly 3 million people globally via its Wuhan Coronavirus. Do these “passes” now amount to
The EU on Wednesday cohosted a Global Cooperation and Training Framework workshop with Taiwan and the US. They discussed the restructuring of the global supply chain and joint financing of small and medium-sized enterprises. This was the first time the EU, represented by European Economic and Trade Office in Taiwan Director Filip Grzegorzewski, cohosted such an event. Launched in 2015, the framework aims to help bring Taiwan’s expertise to the global stage. Essentially, it was designed to find ways to include Taiwan in global efforts, as it remains excluded from international organizations. With Taiwan’s successful containment of COVID-19 and its vital role
Foreigners who learn Mandarin mainly do so for one of two reasons — to do business in China, or to understand issues related to China. For those aiming to do business, it is sensible to learn the language in China. If it is to understand, learning in Taiwan is a good option, because such people are likely to be involved in national security or the military of their home countries. Taiwan is a much safer learning environment compared with China, and it is an information hub for issues related to China. There is access in Taiwan to the truth about the Chinese