Opinion / Op-Ed Contributors

Liu Tienan an example failed values

By Liu Xiuying ( Updated: 2014-12-18 14:08

Liu Tienan an example failed values

Liu Tienan (center), former vice-minister of the National Development and Reform Commission and former chief of the National Energy Administration, receives life imprisonment on Wednesday, Langfang Intermediate People's Court. [Photo/Xinhua] 

Liu Tienan, former vice-minister of the National Development and Reform Commission and former chief of the National Energy Administration, was sentenced to life for abuse of power on Dec 10. Some observers have blamed Liu Tienan’s son, Liu Decheng who too faces trial, for his fall, because the senior Liu received most of the bribes through his son. But Liu Tienan has admitted that he is fully responsible for his son’s crimes.

It was under influence of his father’s words and deeds that Liu Decheng learned the false values of life. As the junior Liu recalled, every time he visited his grandparents, he was reminded by his father to take the shortcut instead of the normal route which encouraged him choose shortcuts in life to “climb up” the social ladder to lead a more prosperous life. Liu Decheng also developed the idea at a very young age that money was omnipotent and one could buy everything with money.

Children learn values through everyday interactions with their parents. Parents not only bring their offspring into this world but also pass their own understandings and philosophy of life to them, both knowingly and unknowingly. This is part of the social inheritance of their children.

Among all elements of social inheritance, parents influence their children most in terms of values. Values are the medium through which people form opinions on the significance of their surroundings, from animate and inanimate beings to material and non-material objects. Values not only determine the reasons that people live for, but also serve as the standards to tell right from wrong.

A survey conducted by the China Youth and Children Research Center on family values and education shows that the most of the values that children develop are similar to those that their parents cherish. For example, the survey results show that the children who accord top priority to personal qualities like patriotism, filial piety and honesty are inspired by their parents. About 51.4 percent of the parents who responded to the survey agreed that “if I were a supervisor, I would take more care of my subordinates” while three out of every 10 children said “if I were a class leader, I would look after those who support me more in class work”.

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