Taiwan’s motorists wait at the intersection of civility and chaos for effective law enforcement to change from red to green
The News Lens
By: Wayne Pajunen
Usually well-mannered Taiwanese are widely recognised as friendly people, ever willing to help with
directions often even walking a lost traveler to their destination. However, when essential laws are not enforced a frightening number of customarily considerate Jekylls transform into terrorizing Hydes.
Aspects of Taiwanese society are analogous to the 19th century Scottish novella “Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde.” A classic tale described as, “An examination of the duality of human nature, an inner struggle between good and evil or civilization versus barbarism.”
Robert Louis Stevenson’s good-natured Dr. Jekyll is transformed to dangerous self-indulgent Mr. Hyde by a well-intended serum gone wrong. Likewise, what may have originally been well-meaning indifferent applications of Taiwan’s laws have only condoned lawlessness fomenting uncivilized Hyde-like alter egos detrimental to civil society.
Taiwanese and Canadians are generally considered friendly peoples and both nations also share well-maintained roads but when driving in Taiwan a chilling divergence of experience prevails.