Dignity and Respect Should Come First

Before I go to my point, just some thoughts.

In a lot of environment, it is very common to use the title when we address to someone. Especially if the talk is quite formal.

It is true in a company or in an University.

It doesn’t mean people are servile. It just means that people show respect to others.

I could call in private the chairman or the president by his/her given name because we are friends, but in public or in formal circumstances, I’d never. It is the same when people address to me in the same circumstances. They use my title.

That was the case before, and still the case now as I chose an academic activity.

It comes from education.

Even 2 centuries ago, naval officers addressed to their seamen using “Mister” followed by the family name.

I know that in USA, it is very common to call each other by his/her given name.

But still, I believe that you got my point.

I don’t mean that because you are using the title that you are showing respect. But it is a starting point.


Firstly, how come, abroad, a member of the Taiwanese administration referred to “Mr. Ma” instead of “Mr. President or President Ma”?

Secondly, how come the president of Taiwan, elected by the people of Taiwan, said yesterday: “he would not mind if China’s Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Strait (ARATS) Chairman Chen Yunlin (陳雲林) addresses him as “Mr Ma” when the Chinese official visits Taiwan later this year – Today Taipei Times“?

He even added (same source as above): “he did not think it would denigrate the country’s sovereignty as long as both sides are on an equal footing

Does he believe or try to let people believe that China treats Taiwan on an “equal footing”?

Does he consider that a Chinese civil servant appointed to represent an association, is equal to the president legally elected by the population of a country?

I agree that cross-straight relationships should be improved via negotiation.

But where is the negotiation? It is a show where one side is giving everything and the other’s one agrees to receive (of course he agrees to receive, come on!).

And still, people call that an historical success?

As the famous “If you want the peace, prepare for the war”, one basic fundamental in negotiation is to have a strong position before anything.

But the first thing the political party in charge did before the negotiation, was to ask to USA to freeze the weapon sales.

What about the promises during the election period to preserve the safety of Taiwan?

I think it follows the presidential candidate speech about democracy and freedom following the Tibet crisis: “Let’s put that on the side… Don’t make them angry…”

It doesn’t matter that “A Chinese dissident who criticized authorities has been detained on charges of allegedly possessing state secrets“, an ill-defined term often used to clamp down on dissent.

Why? Just because he was visiting areas affected by the May 12 earthquake in Sichuan and writing about parents who lost their children.

Obviously, as usual for political people (whatever the color), there is a “before” and an “after” election.

As a guest in this beautiful country, I have no right or willing to criticize the political situation.

But what I am referring until now, has nothing to do with domestic politics.

What I am referring, is about dignity and respect.

See for example in the Legislative Yuan: both sides insulting each others and even fighting…

Forget it and you will downgrade yourself and what you are supposed to represent.

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2 Responses

  1. Hi. I am a long time reader. I wanted to say that I like your blog and the layout.

    Peter Quinn

  2. Thanks you 🙂
    I am a regular visitor to your blog too. And if my my memory serves me well, I promoted a while ago your weblog.
    You have the gift to introduce negotiation technical skills with easy words, in plain English.

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