By Trista di Genova, Editorial Desk
WE admire Hong Kongers’ courage in standing up against Bully China; and fondly reminisce about when Taiwan students peacefully colonized the Taiwan Legislature in the 2014 Sunflower Movement! 🙂
When Hong Kong people recently made a series of bold moves to protest a new law that would have allowed the extradition of their citizens for prosecution in China, I was fondly reminded of my days covering the SUNFLOWER MOVEMENT in Taiwan.
I always found it awe-inspiring that Taiwan students left their computer games long enough to take over the Taiwan legislature, rather than let it ram through a cross-strait trade agreement w/out any public discussion whatsoever!
Then these role models of Taiwan youth even camped out there for a few weeks, for good measure. Hilarious! And good fun to watch this Taiwan example of civil disobedience at its finest!
When I visited the Legislature during the students’ Takeover in April 2014, there were couches blocking the doors, the streets outside filled with 1000+ protesters 24/7.
I met Taiwan artists on the street, and together we did chalk paintings on the sidewalk, of sunflowers & peace.
Then I passed the police checkpoint at the door, flashing my WE credentials. I spoke w/student leaders there in the “Lufayuan’, & was told later that this was broadcast all over the Taiwan news! That is a badge of honor to me, to be seen publicly supporting Taiwan students in the dramatic exercise of their democratic duties.
The presence of the protesters was protective, the students explained to me. The sheer mass of the public’s presence prevented police from attempting to take it back by force.
As a result, nobody got hurt. After making their point & conducting round-the-clock interviews w/journalists — who also were instrumental in keeping the situation under control — the students simply left.
The situation in Taiwan was carefully monitored, under watchful international eyes. Therefore everyone is safer, if authorities are themselves being surveilled.
In terms of my reception, I was welcomed & feted, given cute Sunflower ‘merch’ – t-shirts, fans & stickers. To this day, I treasure these memories.
It was an important time for Taiwan, & Taiwan students ‘done us all proud’; the cross-strait trade pact was delayed.
And in Hong Kong, the mass civil disobedience made the government withdraw the measure, although Carrie Lam, China’s puppetmaster in HK, remained in power despite the concerted calls for her to step down.
Taiwan students colonized the legislature, for god’s sake! What bravery! To this day, I’m still stunned & impressed! Haha!
I’m impressed w/the students for pulling off such an amazing feat; and I’m impressed with TAIWAN, for being such an exemplary example of DEMOCRACY.
Compared to CHINA, TAIWAN is a SHINING BEACON OF DEMOCRACY!
When given a choice, people VOTE WITH THEIR FEET to live in Taiwan BY CHOICE.
The QUALITY OF LIFE, MEDICAL CARE & ALL SERVICES, & TOURISM ARE ALL SUPERIOR to CHINA’s comparable offerings, on L’Ilha Formosa!
Taiwan is a Buddhist-lovin’ place of PEACE whereby NOBODY GOT HURT in the Sunflower Movement’s takeover of the Leg. DISSENT was not CRUSHED VIOLENTLY.
The students made their point, the government made concessions, the students eventually left after 23 days, & NOBODY WAS HURT.
I think in America, ‘they’ (the government!) would most assuredly call in the SWAT Team!
If Americans took over THEIR legislature, it probably wouldn’t matter how ‘peacefully’ it was done.
I’m pretty sure U.S. authorities would storm Congress like WACO TEXAS, teargas everybody out of there – basically OVERKILL is America’s MO these days.
If teargas didn’t work, likely our current Nazi regime in power would send in hordes of military-ready & taser-wielding ROBOCOPS in riot gear. I bet there would be several deaths of even unarmed individuals.
That’s just an indication of how bad things are in America these days. The government in America just can’t be trusted to do the Right Thing, EVER, especially these days of a Malevolent Dictator. Taiwan has Tsai Ing-wen; only if we get our Bernie (or Elizabeth Warren) would we be so safe as Taiwan in America.
I personally find inspiring how Hong Kong people turned out in such great NUMBERS – 1.7 million demonstrators, shutting down the international airport for a few days by their sheer numbers.
Hong Kong is in imminently more danger than their Taiwan counterparts. China has dominated the international bully pulpit for decades now, saber-rattling over what it claims is ‘their’ (Commie/ChinaCom) territory, although they have no PROOF of this.
Taiwan has been de facto ‘independent’ and has acted as a SOVEREIGN STATE w/its own SOVEREIGN GOVERNMENT & AUTONOMOUS ECONOMY for over 50 years now!
Still, China bullies Taiwan, Tibet, XinJiang Muslims, Falun Gong, lots of ethnic and religious groups and countries. BODYWORLDS exhibition is made up of China’s victims! That is one SICK & TWISTED government, and WE sympathize with the Chinese people, because PEOPLE ARE NOT THEIR GOVERNMENT. People are GENERALLY good, unlike Governments, which lie, cheat & steal with IMPUNITY.
As artist Jenny Holtzer once wrote, “ABUSE OF POWER COMES AS NO SURPRISE”.
But WE is not beholden to any China interests.
WE know the difference between RIGHT and WRONG, and it is WRONG for China to continually OPPRESS OTHERS, as well as their own population, of course!
It is for this reason that WE as an AWARD-WINNING online news & features organization, can extend our middle finger to China! at least figuratively.
Since nobody else seems to have the BALLS to stand up to China’s hang-dog international bullying tactics, WE will.
China go home! Mind yer own business! You’ve got a helluva lotta nerve & should look after yer OWN countrymen, before even TRYING to hassle OURS!!
Spend all yer resources on improving yer OWN economy, environment, standard of living, education, instead of WASTING it on building up a CACHE OF USELESS WEAPONS.
DUMBASS CHINA!! Nobody’s gonna attack you!?
You are ONE earthquake away from calamity, so stop wasting everyone’s time & clean up yer own house!
China, stop acting like an abusive lover!
Taiwan is not yours, Tibet is not yours, & WE bet if you let Hong Kongsters decide for themselves, they wouldn’t be yours, either!
So China, take care of yer OWN affairs and BUTT OUT of others’!
Besides, compared to YOU, CHINA, TAIWAN IS WAY BETTER IN EVERY POSSIBLE WAY! 🙂