October 10, 2021 is the 110th anniversary of Taiwan, Republic of China( ROC) independence. The People’s Republic of China (PRC ) leader, Xi Jinping, seeks to turn back the clock on the modernization of China launched by Deng Xiaopeng and reinstate the totalitarianism of Mao. Xi has promised reunification by force if necessary. The rest of the world must not allow this to happen. Why would I, an American near retirement living in rural Virginia care about what takes place across the Taiwan Straits?
It is simple. I enjoyed the rare privilege of living outside Taipei for two years 25 years ago and learned how the KMT saved 8000 years of the treasures and history of China. Had Chiang Kai Shek and his fellow Nationalists not transported the incomparable wealth of China’s historical material culture from the Forbidden City to the island of Formosa in 1949, Mao’s Red Guards would have destroyed it all, along with the millions of people that were purged, during the Cultural Revolution. Mao and his acolytes encouraged neighbors to report neighbors, children to report parents, and wives to report husbands for exhibiting bourgeois values. Everything considered antithetical to Mao’s political ideology was destroyed. While visiting the Forbidden City in Beijing in 1991 I was amazed at the deterioration of the crumbling site devoid of any historic wealth. I asked our guide, Henry Harry, what had happened. He told me it was all in Taiwan.
While the early leaders of ROC certainly practiced their own brand of repression, including decades of martial law, the people of Taiwan 🇹🇼 ultimately created an energetic, creative, capitalist society in the process with democratically elected leaders. They’ve preserved the history of the Chinese people. I’ve not visited a more impressive museum in the world.
This bit of history should resonate with every American. We must not succumbs to the ‘woke’ culture in the United States today that insists that evidence of our history: the good, the bad, the ugly, the glorious, be removed from our public spaces, our cultural institutions, our universities. Giving in to any repression of individual freedoms by the thought police is unfathomable to those of us who have talked to people who have experienced authoritarianism. How is the behavior and hate speech of current Progressive ideologues truly any different?
I will be celebrating Double 10 Day tomorrow, feeling grateful to the people who saved the history of China’s civilization.