Taichung Park - No white men allowed?

A friend of mine from Chia Yi had some business in Taichung City today, so I decided to go into town and meet him. He took care of his business, we had lunch and wandered around for a bit.

Eventually we ended up at Taichung Park. We walked around the park for about 20 minutes, and then sat down near the boat pond. We hadn’t been there long when an elderly Taiwanese gentleman approached us, wanting to talk to a couple of foreigners and practice what little English he knew.

Suddenly, out of nowhere, two policemen appeared. They went on about something, but I have only basic Mandarin language skills, and my friend none at all. Between my Chinese and the Taiwanese gentleman’s English, we were able to get the gist of it. The cops were telling us to leave the park. The language barrier prevented finding out exactly why we were being told to leave.

I’m still trying to wrap my head around this one. There were scores of people at the park enjoying the warm, sunny afternoon. Among them, two forty-something white men who were just sitting and talking. What are the possible reasons we would be singled out and told to leave?

Taichung Park is for Taiwanese only?

If we allow two white men to sit and talk, who knows where it might lead?

Because they can?


Has anyone had a similar experience?

Why didn’t u get the cops to write it down?

They suspected you were gay … or predators … you didn’t pay your entrance fee?

I have been to that park a few times and enjoy paddlin’ around on the boats. I never had any problems.

Maybe you are a brighter white then me. :stuck_out_tongue:

You’re using the wrong soap … wrong deodorant …

[quote=“worryman”]I have been to that park a few times and enjoy paddlin’ around on the boats. I never had any problems.

Maybe you are a brighter white then me. :p[/quote]

Well, I always try to look my whitest.

There was no entrance fee, and I never thought to ask the cops to write it down. I’m thinking they were worried about two white men being among all those Taiwanese children.

What time was this ? You mentioned the afternoon ? Not after dark or something ?

You were wearing white collared shirts …? They mistook you for mormon missionaries …

It was about three or four pm. give or take. If it had been after dark, it wouldn’t have bothered me. Back home, after dark, one would likely be told by any passing police to move along.

Do you look like a pedofile?

Maybe the two coppers had arranged to meet for a bit of how’s your father and you were in their seat?

I would have stayed there until I got a proper reason.

there was definitely a gap in communcation there. There is no reason. Parks do not close and they are open to anyone. Perhaps the police were telling you to be careful and the elderly man translated it as “you should leave”. I think it’s just a misunderstanding and you should forgive everyone involved. But in the future, you should be friendly to police, but stand your ground in a situation like that. Demand an explanation, get badge numbers, and call the foreign affairs division of the police to follow up.

(edit) Here is the foreign affairs police office information:

The Taichung City Police Bureau’s Foreign Affairs Section has officers on duty 24 hours a day, and they always have someone on hand who speaks English to help you. So it might be worthwhile trying to call them first hand, as other emergency numbers do not usually have English speakers, unless you have a Chinese speaker with you to help relay the emergency situation.

Taichung City Police Bureau

Foreign Affairs Section (04) 2327- 3875,2328-9100ext.2122

Address: 588, Wen Xin Road, Sec. 2 Xi Tun District 407

Maybe the problem was the man you were talking to. Maybe he’s a known problem, maybe he scams foreigners, maybe he’s gay and so the police assumed you were too.

I had considered that possibliity, but couldn’t help noticing the guy with whom we were speaking got to stay.

I agree with douglas, there was a definite gap in communication. However, I also believe the police either assumed we were something other than two people having a chat, or they felt the need to flex some muscle.

I love it how when something bad happens in another country people automatically assume it’s because of the colour of their skin.

It took me so long to convince my Japanese friends in Australia that people weren’t throwing eggs at them and yelling at them from cars because they are Japanese. They do that to everyone.

Something was obviously lost in translation in that situation.

It’s not a case of automatically assuming anything. We are all aware of the racism prevelant in Taiwan. There is some basis for wondering why one has been singled out from a crowd.

In any event, this isn’t an it’s-'cuz-I’ze-white thread. It’s more of a WTF? thread.

[quote]I’m still trying to wrap my head around this…

I also believe the police either assumed we were something other than two people having a chat…[/quote]


OK, back in some restroom somewhere the police had left a note offering up some three-way action. The old man responded to the ad. You two whiteys arrived at the spot and were interfering with what was sure to be a grand time for the old man and the cops. The old man told you guys to beat it because he’s a two-holer at best.

Or there was a complete and utter misunderstanding.