After all the controversy around Jackie's donation of four of his old buildings to Singapore, this article points out the heart of the issue and why its important to focus on conserving heritage buildings.
Speaking to China Central Television recently, Jackie Chan said he would
go ahead with his plan to donate four old buildings purchased from
Anhui province to a Singapore university. "I have done nothing to taint
my country. I do not pursue fame and wealth as I already have them,"
Chan told CCTV. Chan bought the buildings two decades ago because he
realized their historical and aesthetic value. That he is donating the
buildings to a university rather than selling them to make profit is a
welcome move, says an article in Yangtze Evening News. Excerpts:
No one knows whether the buildings would have existed until now, let
alone being considered heritage structures, had Chan not bought them 20
years ago. In fact, only a handful of people knew about the buildings
before Chan announced that he would donate them to a Singapore
For many people, such buildings don't have any aesthetic, architectural
or even financial value, and it is highly likely that they would have
been demolished if these people had had their way. And it is a pity that
many of those who oppose (and condemn) Chan's decision to donate the
buildings to a Singapore university are involved in activities that
damage (and even destroy) the few existing ancient buildings or turn a
blind eye to demolition of heritage structures.
It is easy for such people to use the Internet to criticize a celebrity
but very difficult to do something concrete to protect old buildings.
Therefore, we should try to find out why ancient buildings are sold in
the first place and what should be done to protect them, instead of
quarreling about whom Chan has donated the buildings to.