My article published by the Thinking Taiwan English Platform.
Students and academics should be encouraged to care for and to participate in social issues and politics, whether they support government policies or not.
It’s been a tough week for social scientists in Taiwan. It began with Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Su Ching-chuang’s (蘇清泉) grilling of Environmental Protection Administration Minister Wei Kuo-yen (魏國彥), who was scheduled to answer questions on nuclear waste disposal, about what social scientists and the departments of sociology at universities do exactly. This was followed by Su’s tirade accusing faculty and students at public universities of “causing chaos on the streets” and his call for “education budget redistribution.” Then KMT Legislator Lu Hsueh-chang (呂學樟) stepped in and led an investigation team, organized by the Legislative Yuan’s Judiciary and Organic Laws and Statutes Committee (司法及法制委員會), into Academia Sinica, the nation’s top research institution.