So here it goes. I haven’t been talking much about politics since the 2016 election and President Park’s suspension of powers in December. There are quite a few reasons to this, but let me talk about her impeachment for a moment.
As NYT puts it outright, this is the evidence of “evolution of young democracy”. Many politicians in Korea, in the past, could “get away” with their abuse of power; corruption was so prevalent that it became a norm and level of trust for the government among the public was plunging. President Park’s scandal broke out at the height of these political corruptions. And people did not let this chance go. What we really should focus on is a consistent and cohesive effort shown by the press, prosecutors and most importantly, the public to combat this scandal and reveal the truth. Despite colossal legal barriers and exhausting procedures to prove her allegations, people did not give up but resisted; they were brave enough to confront the reality and tackle the roots of political corruption.
“The people of Korea” did this. They did it through peace, perseverance and commitment. I sincerely hope current and future politicians will learn that people, especially the younger generation, have changed: we no longer ignore. When we witness the wrong, we act instead of being manipulated. Though we still have a long way to go, we care about politics and attempt to protect our own freedom. We are concerned about social justice and safeguarding our democracy. Most of all, we learned to solve problems civilly. Through education, information and mistakes, we are recognizing the importance of civic participation.
President Park’s “legacy”, if there is any, is that people should be more politically involved. Political participation by no means refers to knowing every bit of politics, but being aware of our own rights and liberties. I hope we keep these values within ourselves.
Lastly, as I did previously, I thank the press, prosecutors and some politicians who put themselves out there to serve Korea and its people. Their dedication and commitment to public service will be remembered.
Democracy stands. And it shall reside in the people.