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Readers write: Taiwan’s democracy, tobacco in California, US conflicts

Letters to the editor for the July 25, 2016 weekly magazine.

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Supporters of Taiwan's Democratic Progressive Party, DPP, presidential candidate, Tsai Ing-wen, cheer as she declares victory in the presidential election in Taipei, Taiwan in January 2016.

Wally Santana/AP

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Taiwan’s democracy

Regarding the May 31 article “Taiwan shines a light on a dark past” ( Taiwan has made remarkable progress in its transition to democracy. The smooth process shows that Taiwan’s democracy rests on a solid foundation. 

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What’s particularly noteworthy is that [President] Tsai [Ing-wen] announced a truth and reconciliation commission for the island’s past repression; it represents another piece of evidence that Taiwan is a beacon of democracy in the Chinese-speaking world. This exceptional transition is a major step forward in continuing the democratic tradition that has taken root on the island, and it further enhances Taiwan’s standing in the global family of democracies. The people in Taiwan have built a prosperous, free, orderly society with strong institutions worthy of emulation. Taiwan is a model for others.

Kent Wang

Research fellow at the Institute for
Taiwan-America Studies

Washington, D.C.

Tobacco in California

Regarding a May 23 Points of Progress item: Wow! California wants to ban tobacco products on state campuses. How about banning guns, which tend to have more immediate and severe consequences?

Jurgen Pape

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Granville, Ohio

US conflicts

In the June 6 article “A ‘nation’ with pride and purpose,” columnist John Yemma writes, “Today, the world is largely at peace.” Has Mr. Yemma forgotten that the United States has been at war since 2001, particularly in the countries that are the largest sources for refugees, Afghanistan and Syria, and that the Islamic State group began in Iraq because of the US invasion in 2003? It would be wise to remember the responsibility the US bears for the refugee crisis, including US involvement in Libya and Yemen.

Cristina Malcolmson

Portland, Maine