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[Opinion] Longing For A Small Giant

Posted June. 05, 2002 12:27,   


On every Sunday, office workers trying to find some rest at home are surrounded by an explosively loud speaker. You cannot recognize what the speaker says, but it must be a lot of unrealized promises by local election candidates. The campaign continues with loud music and deafening roars reaching over to apartment windows. Other residents might get angry as much as I do over the din, but nobody criticizes it out loud. Their anticipations over the big game that Korea is ahead of might have appeased their angers.

Two hot topics these days are a local election and the World Cup Games. But people are not that excited over the third local election since the local governing system was introduced some ten years ago. For the past ten years, people have been observing the same kind of scenes as they did in the central government. Statistics shows that increasing number of local governors is being punished for corruption and bribe scandals, and local politics is full of corruptive human network. These facts make voters` minds estrange from local elections. Voters do not have trust in local politics any more.

But, the World Cup Games are an enthusiasm and attraction itself. People watch closely every move by players who they do not know well of, and shout out loud over goals. That is an enthusiasm. You get excited and feel moved on your own. A game is only a game, but it creates enormous energy and excitement for the world. Players do not say a word during a 90-minute match.

They just run around the ground and respond to speculators with action. They are focused on shooting a goal. Yet, the practical small action creates a huge sensation among public, and the player becomes a public hero.

How about today`s politics? It lost such attractions long time ago. Candidates only pour out harsh and untrustworthy words, making voters get tired of gaudy rhetoric. If the 20th century was a century of great heroes, the 21st century refuses such heroes. A great figure can cause a single event shocking the world, but its effect would be halved in the current political situation where the world is closely linked. Now is the times of a small hero. Rev. Martin Luther King`s life full of non-violent resistance activities against racial discrimination gave a boost to his speech. But, Korean politicians sensitive to political gains and interests are talking out loud on street, with no public echoes back. That is why the Korean public is into the small and honest hero World Cup Games.