Bigger Heart

With my love in Taiwan music, I happen to know a lot of friends from Taiwan over the years. Some of them we have gotten so close that they know me better than Singaporean friends. I would even stay over at their houses whenever I visit Taiwan for vacation. At the same time, I also get to know fellow Singaporeans who share the same love for Taiwan music as me. My love for Taiwan music has widen my circle of friends somehow and I totally enjoyed company of these friends.

As I get to know more about KPop Culture and develop my love for Super Junior, it seems that an invisible wall is gradually growing between me and my friends from Taiwan.  My Taiwan friends would share their hatred for Koreans generously on Facebook and most of the time I chose to ignore. After all, we can’t see eye to eye for every single matter. Being friends means having to embrace our differences too.

I’ll give an example of activities that can antagonize my friends. They got angry when they heard Donghae from Super Junior opened up a cafe called “The Grand Palace” in Taipei. My Taiwan friends wished the government would stop allowing Koreans to open stores and shops in Taiwan because they ended up employing fellow Koreans as employees and it didn’t help improve Taiwan local labour market employment rate. I do feel it is true in the sense that it doesn’t help improve the labour market rate. However, it boosts the economy because Koreans bring money into Taiwan for investment. They need to see that this helps in the economy flow of Taiwan on the overall.

The spark off point came when this event happened and the Taiwanese became more united then ever hating Koreans. In short, the Korean referee disqualified the Taiwanese sportsman for cheating in the Olympics game when she was already on a winning strike. In all the games be it Taekwondo or Soccer,  it relies highly on the referee discretion at the point in time. Even though we have cameras filming and displays of slow motion video of the chain of events, the referees do not have the luxury of pausing the game and replay the videos before making any decisions such as disqualification or sending the sportsmen off the field. In most of the games, we rely heavily on the referees being impartial and having an eye for detail. If later found out that there was wrong being done to the sportsmen, we can only shrug our shoulders and say “too bad”. There is no way of turning back time, or even asking for a re-match. The only way to move forward, is to wait for the next game in a few years.

I understand how angry my Taiwan friends were and they felt wronged. At the same time, I wonder if it is really necessary to carry out extreme measures of hating the entire nation and their culture for a man’s (the referee) fault? Isn’t it a little too far to be throwing eggs at  the Korean Elementary School in Taipei? Did the children do anything to deserve this behavior towards them? Do you need to boycott the entire range of Korea products and food just because of one person?

To add on to how ridicule the event has snowballed even months after the Olympics, my Singaporean friend tweeted this late last night.

I get it when my Taiwanese friends are too blinded by their own surging emotions of hatred to look at the facts, but why can’t a Singaporean residing in the sunny land of Singapore see through all this and instead blindly join in the hating?

If you feel so strongly for the Koreans, reading this article, do you also feel so strongly for Mark Clattenburg and also extend the hatred to the entire United Kingdom? Reading this, do you hate Tim Donaghy and extend the hatred to United States and the entire US population?

If you are, I can only advice you to put down the hatred. Else you might be left with not much choices on Earth for vacation plans, and not much brands you can buy for clothing and apparels. If you are not so angry at the people I mentioned, then perhaps you are just being racist to a particular country.

Which one are you?

I only hope for myself and the people around me to have a bigger heart.

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