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Wednesday, November 24, 2010

My Father is Li Gang

In China, a drunken teenager hit and killed a girl on roller skates.  The police chased and tried to arrest him and he yelled to the crowd (in Chinese of course ;-)  "You can't sue me!  My father is Li Gang!!"  That's the truth.  If you are a son of a politician, police officer, or some royalty with money and power in China, you are likely to get off the hook for any kind of wrong doing.

An attempt to cover the incident immediately ensued, but the phrase "My father is Li Gang" went viral. People in China used the phrase whenever they did something that they didn't want to take responsibility for or to get out of things they didn't want to do:  "You can't make me do those dishes, my father is Li Gang!"  "I know I stayed out too late, but you can't get mad, my father is Li Gang!" The phrase struck a cord with me as well, especially when I thought about how prevalent evasive behavior for wrongdoing is in big business, the financial market and some of our politicians.   Not many people step up and take responsibility for some of the big issues and the affect they have had on the US and global world markets or environment?  Evidently many people's father is Li Gang.

Now I'm not a political artist really, my work to date has mostly been about poking fun at the mass sheep like mindsets that I see in myself and others.  My job more often than not is to simply capture in pictures what we are discussing in vision and strategy meetings when I'm working as a strategic illustrator.  So I was surprised when one morning I got up and created this drawing.

Perhaps I just wanted to remind myself that despite how we might wish things to go, we really don't ever get out of taking responsibility for our actions.  Someone once said to me, "The law of cause and effect has long reaching arms."  And so it is.

In the spirit of Thanksgiving, I am thankful for this reminder, thankful for you, and thankful that I don't need a Li Gang in this lifetime.  May that little girl's family find peace, though they may not ever see retribution.  May she live on in us, memorialized through the internet and our love.
Happy Thanksgiving,
Patti

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