I was born in Taiwan, got an American education.
Thats why I was both shocked and disappointed at former friends as they publicly declared me a “Race Traitor” and having “Not Enough National Pride”. for calling myself, “Taiwanese” one day. Apparently that was a grave threat at one of the best high schools in New York City and had to be suppressed. Whatever their American education had taught them, it was definitely not respect for different opinions.
Keep in mind these were high-school kids whom felt that I didn’t have enough “pride” because I already didn’t like the fascist nature of the CCP or the historically despotic nature of Chiang Kai Shek. It was like being given a choice between the party responsible for the most deaths in human history or one responsible for the 3rd-most deaths without a choice for “neither”.
It just came natural to me to dislike governments that are most famous for killing; so it was difficult to fathom why they would support regimes that kill. The concept was bizarre to me. Otherwise at the time I cared little for politics.
Naturally I consulted my parents on what the heck I was supposed to call myself. It was confusing because before 1988 my parents insisted that I call myself Chinese, over American, especially when I was in Taiwan. That of course changed in the 90’s, adding to the confusion.
However after confronting my parents, the response I got was just as confusing; parts of my family think I’m Chinese, parts think I’m not, and so on. Worse, politically the whole situation was just as convoluted. I decided I had to make my own decision on my identity and eventually choose my politics as they were clearly intertwined. No longer would I let others take what should have been my job.
Really early on I realized that many of the old KMT cronies were responsible for things like 228, the White Terror, and the disappearance of many activists against their dictatorship. They were even worse in China apparently, prematurely ending the lives of over 9 million innocent civilians.
The Democratic Progressive Party seemed like the natural choice. Of course, as expected, they don’t know how to run things either, I think partly due to the fact that none have appreciated the way the US government works (which is a utopia in comparison) or a certain cultural immaturity towards lofty ideas like equality and good-citizenship if there even is such a thing.
Either way having known (in some cases grew up with) officials from both sides since childhood I do lean green. I mean I’ve met maybe 75% of all the minor-major presidential candidates since 1996 and generally felt far more impressed by the spirit of the Pan Green candidates but felt that Blue candidates were far better with words and definitely enjoyed far more wealth.
In the end, although the KMT parties were far nicer (and still are by the way) the Greens tend to love Taiwan for itself, not as part of a province or part of a long term goal for some sort of benefit. Nor were they as likely to be biased against you simply because they knew you had a different political opinion.
I think this is probably why in the end I’ve had a different experience from someone like Chris. Unlike him, I know that Taiwan is already a democracy and already independent. Its also why I think there shouldn’t be a debate for independence but a debate about when we should summon Captain Obvious to point it and end this game of CCP-Make-Pretend.
I also believe that like South Korea (and early America) our people need time to figure out how to mature as a democracy. The things we are going through are lightweight versus what went down in America in the early 1800’s or the crazy amount of corruption that still exists in South Korea today. In a way I think people need more perspective; you’re not going through the worst, however bad you think the situation is in Taiwan, its far better than what most of the planet is going through.
As difficult a time you’re getting being a foreign teacher in Taiwan, you have yet to see how hard it is for a foreigner to make a living in a Post 9/11 America. Highly religious Americans with the Mexican borderline situation and the wars in the Middle East may appear a thousand times more xenophobic than the KMT or DPP has ever been. Nor do I think you’ve realized how anti-American and anti-Democratic the KMT was, just read Formosa Betrayed,