Message from Rep. Howard L. Berman
Taiwanese-American Heritage Week
May 13-20, 2001
I'd like to extend my warmest wishes to all
Taiwanese-Americans as we celebrate "Taiwanese-American
Heritage Week." This special week honors the
outstanding contributions of over 500,000
Taiwanese-Americans to our nation's social, economic and
political life. Taiwanese-Americans have excelled in every
field, and have made especially notable contributions as
medical professionals, Nobel Laureate scientists, business
owners and human rights activists.
As we recognize the numerous achievements of
Taiwanese-Americans in the United States, Taiwanese-American
Heritage Week also gives us the opportunity to celebrate the
success of democracy in Taiwan. Since the lifting of martial
law in 1987, Taiwan has become an open, democratic society
where fundamental freedoms are respected and the will of the
people is observed. The Taiwanese-American community
deserves a significant amount of credit for aiding in this
The March 18, 2000 election of President Chen Shui-bian
represents the crowning achievement of the Taiwanese
people's struggle for full-fledged democracy and freedom.
This election bodes well for the future of a democratic
Taiwan, but many challenges remain. Much more work to be
done to ensure that Taiwan's status and global contributions
are properly respected and appreciated. In addition, Taiwan
must remain vigilant against threats to its own security.
I'm confident that Taiwan will meet these challenges and
continue to play a productive role in the international
Taiwan and the United States share a common commitment to
the ideals of democracy, freedom and human rights. The 1979
Taiwan Relations Act, which forms the official basis for
friendship and cooperation between the United States and
Taiwan, continues to provide a strong foundation for the
bond between the people of both countries. That bond is made
stronger each day by the Taiwanese-American community.
I am privileged to represent a strong Taiwanese-American
community, and proud to pay tribute to their strength and
activism during Taiwanese-American Heritage Week.