Social Movements

Mobilizing Crisis, Material Inequality, and Ideological Splits

On November 24, five of the national referendum results show overwhelming opposition against the legalization of same-sex marriage and a gender equality education in grade school that would include LGBTQ issues. While there are many questions that remain to be answered through a more detailed analysis of the voting data, we are here writing as activists to reflect on the movement and offering some observations and directions on how we may want to move forward from here... Read More

What Now for Taiwanese Independence Efforts After the Failure of the Olympics Referendum?

The proposal for Taiwan to participate in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics under the name “Taiwan”, instead of “Chinese Taipei”, was among those defeated during the referendum held simultaneously with 2018 local elections. This will have important ramifications going forward for efforts to realize Taiwanese independence... Read More

Progressive Taiwanese Civil Society Sees Defeat By Way Of National Referendum

The results of referendum voting will no doubt come as a great shock to progressive Taiwanese civil society with, quite literally, all of the referendum proposals they championed being voted down. On the other hand, all of the referendums they opposed passed. However, not all of these achieved the necessary 25% of voter participation needed to be legally binding... Read More

What Will Happen If Progressive Taiwanese Civil Society Is Defeated Through The Referendum?

Referendum reform has historically been pushed for by progressive civil society groups in Taiwan, as a means to resolve longstanding issues blocked by the KMT and other conservative forces. Progressive civil society groups were finally victorious in amending the Referendum Act last year, lowering the benchmarks needed to hold a referendum in Taiwan. But what if the results of referendum voting tomorrow indicate that, ironically enough, conservatives have managed to hijack the referendum and to use it against progressive civil society?... Read More

Concerns That 2020 Olympics Name Referendum Could Lead To Taiwan Olympics Ban On The Rise

The most popular of the slate of referendums which are to be voted on this Saturday, the referendum on what name Taiwan will participate in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics under, has come under increased scrutiny in the past week. Namely, the International Olympics Committee has warned that Taiwan could be banned from participating in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics if the referendum is successful... Read More

Televised Debate On Nuclear Power Points To KMT Push Behind Referendum

The third televised debate on nuclear energy took place on November 12th, with Huang Shih-hsiu (黃士修), the initiator of the referendum on whether Taiwan should remove legal provisions for Taiwan to be nuclear-free by 2025, faced off against Hung Shen-han of the Green Citizen Action Alliance. The debate quite directly reveals how the KMT has been a major force in pushing for the referendum... Read More

Televised Gay Marriage Debate Suggests What Endgame Of Anti-Gay Groups Is

What emerges from a televised debate held on November 15th between New Power Party (NPP) chair Huang Kuo-chang and Tseng Pin-chieh, a professor at the College of Law at National Chung Cheng University, should be highly concerning to supporters of marriage equality in Taiwan. Namely, Tseng’s comments in the debate are highly indicative of what the aims of anti-gay groups in Taiwan are in their referendum against marriage equality, what their current strategy is, and what their endgame likely is... Read More

Tens Of Thousands Demonstrate In Support Of Gay Marriage In Taipei

A reported 100,000 people attended a rally on Ketagalan Boulevard in support of LGBTQ rights today, with a nationwide referendum on marriage equality and LGBTQ-friendly education scheduled to take place next Saturday. Featuring musical performances and speeches and closing with a performance by heavy metal band Chthonic, fronted by New Power Party legislator Freddy Lim, that the rally would be so large was a surprise to most... Read More