For the first time ever, Taiwanese Olympic athletes struck gold when Chu Mu-yen (朱木炎) and Chen Shih-hsin (陳詩欣) won two gold medals in the lightweight taekwondo competition at 2004 Olympics Games in Athens, setting the whole country aflame with pride and joy. \nOn Aug. 26, Chen Shih-hsin, 25, defeated Cuba's Yanelis Yuliet Labrada Diaz in the final of the women's under-49kg division and won Taiwan's first-ever Olympic gold medal. Later that night, Chu Mu-yen, 22, won the gold in the men's under-58kg division by defeating Mexican Oscar Francisco Salazar Blanco. \nIt marked the first time that any country had won two gold medals on a single day in taekwondo since it became an Olympic event 12 years ago. The record-breaking victory turned the two young athletes into national heroes overnight. \nUpon their homecoming, the two Olympic stars were welcomed back by a huge parade in Taipei on Sept. 1 and honored by President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) six days later. The country's first gold medalists also led fourteen fellow Olympic and Paralympic medalists in singing the national anthem with university students in Oct. 10 national day celebrations. \nWhat won Chu and Chen great admiration was the struggle behind their now-realized stellar career. Chen Shih-hsin was 18 when she ran away from home and fled the harsh life of her taekwondo training center in Kaohsiung. To earn a living in Taichung, Chen gave up her dream to kick her way onto the world stage and became a roadside vendor selling clothes and betel nuts. \nChu had always been in the shadow of fellow competitor Huang Chih-hsiung (黃志雄) in the under 58kg category, which accentuated his status as a blooming talent. But in 2002, Chu grabbed a silver medal at the Asian Games in Sapporo and defeated South Korea's top taekwondo athlete in the World Student Games last year.
PHOTO: LIAO CHEN-HUI, TAIPEI TIMES
THE CHINA CONNECTION: As Beijing’s aggression increases, so does Taiwanese consciousness, making a new constitution imperative, Hsu Wei-chun said If the nation is to ratify a new constitution, it must first end any illusions about the current document’s relevance to Taiwan, an academic told a forum in Taipei yesterday. For the constitutional revisionist movement to succeed, it needs public enthusiasm, the right timing and a clear plan of action, Chung Yuan Christian University associate professor Hsu Wei-chun (徐偉群) told attendees at the event titled “Imagining a New Constitution for a New Era,” which was organized by the National Taiwan University Graduate Student Association. The Constitution exists under the “one China” framework and has little relevance to Taiwan, Hsu said, adding that
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An advertisement displayed in the corridor of the underground Taipei City Mall has caused contention online with social media users saying that it depicts Taiwanese bears as servants of Chinese pandas. The advertisement — which imitates the style of an ancient Chinese painting, but replaces people with bears — shows a scene in imperial China, with Formosan black bears laboring, while pandas relax and enjoy beverages. “The development of the tourism industry is important, but this type of targeted advertising is extremely disrespectful — and it makes people uncomfortable,” Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Taipei City Councilor Chen E-jun (陳怡君) said. The advertisement, under