Share this

Dec 3, 2007

228 & Martial Law Period Investigation Bill

DPP caucus whip and professional racist* Wang Hsing-nan (王幸男) was one of two DPP lawmakers who introduced a draft law to the legislature today called the "Special Draft Law on Investigating and Assigning Responsibility for Illegal Government Actions the 228 Incident and Martial Law Period" 「二二八事件及戒嚴時期政府違法責任追究特別條例草案」. Now that's a mouthful.

The draft law calls for a legal investigation into such illegal actions committed by government personal of the time. The fourth section of the law, according to CNA, states that the relatives removed up to three generations (isn't that what 三等親 is?) will have "the right to act on the part of the accused in court,"「代行訴訟法上的權利」a phrase that caused an explosive debate today.

The KMT basically tried to spin the bill as a DPP attempt to have the children or grandchildren of former hoodlums put on show trials; Wang Jin-pyng asked, "What era are we living in?" to imply what he considered the inappropriateness of such a bill; Ma Ying-jeou said this bill does not fit with Frank Hsieh's aim for the parties to co-exist in harmony; Frank Hsieh stated the bill would help provide answers to future generations on what happened in this period; Wang Hsing-nan himself accused the KMT of entirely distorting his bill, which apparently they have.

I mean, the media or the KMT (it's hard to tell which used the phrase first) even said that this portion of the bill was reviving the ancient Chinese practice of "Implicating the nine clans" (株連九族) in a dead person's crimes -- to get an idea of the debate over just how many relatives that really involves, look here (simplified Chinese).

I heard of this first on underground radio on my way to work this morning, and even though the station spun it in a fairly pro-Green way, I was unimpressed and really fairly disgusted with the bill.

Then, I actually read the article being debated, and it seems really quite reasonable -- even a sort of window for the families of the accused to get their fair word in instead of having their dead ancestors mocked at an empty trial.

At this time, the Legislature has not discussed the bill and it has very few sponsors. In fact, I even think they didn't get enough people to come to meet quorum today, so ... expect to see this whole thing replayed again some day very soon.

* I make this comment based on his dislike of foreign workers having a chance to apply for permanent residency and his calling that opportunity a "loophole" that needed to be closed.

No comments: