Monday, August 30, 2004

Beijing - 2008

So, now it's on to Beijing. I hope by the time we get to Beijing Taiwan will be able to see its flag raised and anthem played whenever they win an Olympic gold. Taiwan won its first ever gold medal on Thursday (they actually won two on Thursday), but had to settle for stand-ins for their flag and anthem.
The images of Chen and Chu winning their medals brought emotions of the Taiwanese masses -- sitting before their televisions late into the night -- to a fever pitch. The strains of the National Flag Song sounded so sweet, and the five-ringed Olympic flag looked beautiful.

This was a moment of enormous pride -- but that pride was mixed with regret. For the flag was not Taiwan's national flag, and the music was not Taiwan's national anthem. Such are the compromises that the country must make in order to participate in international sports. It is not the sort of treatment that a normal nation would expect. Taiwan has to work harder to fight for the same kind of treatment other countries get as part of the international community.
Puerto Rico doesn't have to put up with this. Palestine had its own flag and anthem.

What odds that China will allow Taiwan to compete under its own flag by 2008?