confucian values

Nearly Half Of Newlyweds In Taiwan’s Taitung County Divorce – “The Number Is Frightening”, Says Magistrate


Justin Huang, T’ai-tung County Magistrate (image by the T’ai-tung County government via Wikimedia Commons)

On September 6 Justin Huang, the Magistrate of T’ai-tung County in southern Taiwan, attended an annual ceremony to celebrate golden, diamond and platinum wedding anniversaries.

According to local reports, 30 couples celebrated their golden anniversary, 14 their diamond anniversary, and 3 their platinum anniversary.

The couples were selected by the public bureaus of every township and city. The longest-married couple were Mr. Wang Tien-pao and Mrs. Wang Yü-tien, who have been married for 71 years.

Reacting to a government report revealing that about half of all newlyweds in T’ai-tung County divorce each month, Huang said that the number “is frightening.” He added that the number of people who divorce, do not marry and do not have children show how “serious the issue of fertility rate” in the area is.

Huang said that the relationship between husband and wife is like the ‘face-changing‘ in the Sichuan opera. “Quarrels aren’t rare, but one remains ‘partner from youth to old age’ (少年夫妻老來伴).”

Huang said that traditional couples who have maintained their union for a long time are an example for young people to follow. He stressed that family values should be “passed on the next generations.”

In Taiwan, traditional family values play an important role in public life. The government endorses traditional Confucian notions such as filial piety through public ceremonies and prizes, like the foot-washing ceremony and the filial piety awards.

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