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Empty promises of national unity before presidential election

Empty promises of national unity before presidential election

Posted February. 19, 2022 07:25,   

Updated February. 19, 2022 07:25


With presidential election campaigns for March 9 escalating with a lot of heat, contenders are only making voters wear a frown as they spit out incendiary and provocative expressions such as “rituals of skinning a cow” and “parasites.” Major candidates also scramble to make coarse and low-grade remarks such as “shamans” and “fascists.” They only boast that their end goal is to reach grand unity but seem to go so low that they tear voters’ hearts apart.

The ruling Minjoo Party of Korea’s Lee Jae-myung on Thursday brought up the incident of abuse of power by Choi Soon-sil, saying, “Mrs. Choi would tell others’ fortune but I guess that she did not cast spells. I will not go where any shaman leads but follow where citizens lead.” He seemingly intended to link main opposition People’s Power Party candidate Yoon Seok-youl to shamanism allegations. Minjoo Rep. Kim Eui-gyeom argued that a man called Monk Kunjin in 2018 practiced a grotesque and spooky ritual of getting a cow skinned. Rep. Kim’s criticism was leveled against Yoon and his wife as he suspected the couple of praying with tags of their names hanging up in a brutal shamanist ritual of skinning a living cow.

In response to the argument that he wants political revenge, Yoon said, “It is a typical tactic used by fascists such as Hitler and Mussolini as well as communists to sweep their wrongdoings under the rug while framing innocent people to incite unrest.” Given that People’s Power Party leader Lee Jun-seok would once criticize the ruling party as a political group fed by hatred for disparaging him as a young Goebbels, Yoon has recently taken a similar offense strategy as well. Added to this, People’s Power Party members persistently raised suspicions about Kim Hye-kyung’s alleged misuse of corporate credit cards, warning, “We should not let a parasite family take on this country.”

It may be a crushed hope if we wish the upcoming presidential election to serve as both a golden opportunity for national integration and a platform for lofty discussion for the sake of the nation’s future. In fact, their ruthlessness have reached unprecedented levels. Even U.S. and British news reports harshly criticized the ongoing presidential campaigns across South Korea as the worst election ever full of scandals, squabbles and insults or the “most distasteful” election in 35 years since South Korea’s democratization.


Turning a deaf ear to such concerns and criticisms, major candidates both of the ruling and opposition parties are hell-bent on stabbing at other competitors with violent and ruthless verbal attacks. If they are pitifully desperate for their sole goal of winning in a fight, voters will be left with mixed feelings regardless of who will win. Also, cooperative governance in such a critical moment of the nation will only ended up being an impossible dream. Although morality is one of the most important qualities in candidates, verification processes are supposed to be based on evidential grounds and logical arguments. The two major candidates should now refrain from pointing an accusatory finger at each other that only sparks hatred and animosity so that they can keep their promises to voters that they will achieve national integration.