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[Editorial] Talk with President Based on Scripts

Posted November. 03, 2001 09:33,   


It was said that a representative of farmers, who intended to speak at the luncheon talk with President invited by the Kyungnam residents, was taken out of the meeting by the presidential guards without able to say a word. Because of this incident, the Kyungnam branch of the National Farmers League has requested for an official apology from Cheongwadae presidential guards.

It was reported that 260 social leaders participated in the luncheon talk to listen to President`s `talk of encouragement`, while there was no program in which participants could speak. Therefore, this incident has a characteristic that sometimes takes place at the tour activities of President.

However, the farmer was officially invited and had sincerely requested before the event that he wanted to speak at the luncheon talk. Considering the given situation, the farmer seemed to have wanted to inform the real condition of farmers who suffer from the heavy fall of rice prices to President with innocent motivation and intention, not with heroism. In other words, it does not seem that the farmer intentionally tried to disturb the event, or it was a situation which may cause problems in terms of security.

Of course, various difficulties in terms of security guard or problems in terms of program can take place unexpectedly at the activities in which President participates. Thorough countermeasures against them are important. However, there must be some cases in which it is better not to have an event since the event stiffens or becomes formalistic. The luncheon talk invited by the Kyungnam residents can be said of such a case.

If the talk was intended to have lunch together with President by inviting social leaders, the talk should not be regarded simply as an opportunity to inform the government`s achievement. Rather, the talk should be an opportunity in which the government can acknowledge the public sentiment by listening to people. When President can see the on-site of people`s lives and listen to ‘live voice’ of people, the local tour becomes meaningful. If it is the place where people listen to the welcoming speech based on the scripts and `the talk of encouragement`, and if the questions are already adjusted or there is no program for questioning, the talk is useless. This is why the plea of the farmer sounds realistic, that is, ``If it is the event where we shake hands with President and listen to the bragging of the government after eating, the event is meaningless.``

Cheongwadae said that the guards restrained the farmer in accordance with the usual practice. However, how can any citizen talk frankly to President in such a threatening and stiffened environment? How can stories of frank people be delivered to President?