August 04, 2005

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One Country, Two Flowers

OK, I swear to the Almighty that this is one of the most hysterically funny articles that were meant to be serious in a very long time. It is about how China does not have a national flower, it is the only country in the world not to have one, and the battles the campaigners have fought for China to have not one, but two flowers.An example of the raging debate:

In the mid-1990s, the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress discussed the issue of a national flower, but no decision was made.

The main reason why a decision still hasn't been made is that not everyone understands the significance of having a national flower.

"The national flower is different from the national anthem, flag or emblem, which are written into the (country's) constitution. It has nothing to do with politics," Chen said.

"However, the peony was the national flower during the Qing Dynasty, and the plum blossom was named the national flower by the Republic of China in 1929. So, there is a tendency to avoid meddling in the issue since it is apparently political," Chen added.

There is another reason. "The country is too diverse. There is no one flower that truly symbolizes the whole of China," Chen explained.

Chen remarked that as the only major nation in the world without a national flower, China is sure to feel the awkwardness of the situation as the 2008 Beijing Olympics approaches.

"This is the best time for us to decide on a national flower!" he said.

Having two national flowers is not the only option available. Since the 1980s, different proposals have been put forward: there was the single flower proposal, pitting the peony and the plum blossom against each other; there was the "one country, four flowers" proposal that involved the plum blossom, the peony, the chrysanthemum and the water lily, each one representing a season; and there was the "one country, five flowers" proposal, also known as "one primary, four supplementary," the peony being the main national flower and the other four representing the different seasons -- orchid (spring), water lily (summer), chrysanthemum (autumn) and plum (winter).

I don't suppose the Chinese leadership has considered the option of holding a national popular referendum on this floral issue of critical importance...

posted by HK Dave on 08.04.05 at 03:47 PM in the


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One Post, Two Articles
Excerpt: Two blogposts caught my eye this morning. One is from Peking Duck and one is from SimonWorld. Both are interesting and worthy of a read.
Weblog: MeiZhongTai
Tracked: August 6, 2005 12:06 PM


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