Taiwan Matters! The PRC flag has never flown over Taiwan, and don't you forget it!

"Taiwan is not a province of China. The PRC flag has never flown over Taiwan."

Stick that in your clipboards and paste it, you so-called "lazy journalists"!

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Thursday, August 31, 2006

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Anecdote

I offer this anecdote as a glimpse into how at least one person in Taiwan views the political situation here as well as Taiwan's relation to China. I like anecdotes, which might or might not express my personal views, because they in some ways break through the media filters that tend to represent specific corporate interests. To me, each personal account adds depth and nuance to stories that are usually presented as one-dimensional, this-or-that happenings with single interpretations.

A friend of mine from Germany introduced me to a friend of his last night, a Hakka woman from Miaoli County. Her family has been in Taiwan for several generations and came from somewhere in Guangdong Province. We met at a bar near National Taiwan University specializing in Belgian beer. Of course, I asked her many questions about politics here, as she asked me questions about America ("Do you like Bush?").

She said she gets mad everytime she hears Mainland Chinese say Taiwan is part of China. However, she said she is not green (pro-DPP and its allies) or blue (pro-KMT and its allies). She is in the center and is fed up with both parties. When my friend asked her if she supports Taiwan independence, she replied that Taiwan is already independent. It is just a matter of recognition of that fact.

However, she also said that she wasn't against unification between Taiwan and China at some point in the future. The main issue for her, though, is what are the conditions of the unification, and any talk of unification under China's present leadership is unacceptable for her.

Are her views representative of Taiwanese in general? Of the Hakka community? Of people in Miaoli? Of people in her class or sector of society?

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