OPINION> Commentary
Stop defacing public property
(China Daily)
Updated: 2009-04-08 07:46

It's absurd to think that you can deface landmarks on the Mainland but not in Taiwan, says an article in the Yangtze Evening Post. Following is an excerpt:

A commoner named Zhao Genda from Changzhou, Jiangsu province, recently aroused national outrage by carving his name on a rock face of Taipei Yeliu Geopark during his tour to Taiwan.

No one doubts Zhao should be condemned for his graffiti, but why has he become such a target for national criticism?

As we all know, it's still a common practice for domestic tourists to carve names at domestic tourist spots, far too long a bad habit of Chinese mainlanders.

In fact, mainlanders are angry this time not because of Zhao's inscription but because he carved his name in Taiwan, away from the Chinese mainland and in doing so may have tarnished all mainlanders.

It's a strange mindset for us to adopt opposite attitudes towards the same bad habit.

We show indifference to the rampant scribbling at tourist spots on the mainland; then collectively criticize behavior at tourist spots outside it. This is actually meant to hide the fact from the world that Chinese mainlanders still possess this habit.

(China Daily 04/08/2009 page8)