Public participation needed in making regulations

Updated: 2013-08-23 21:27


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A new regulation in Beijing that only allows a maximum of five subway passengers to stand within one square meter is arousing hot debate. There are several similar regulations and authorities need to consider whether they can be implemented, says a column in People's Daily. Excerpts below:

Regulations are a necessity in all societies but some of the regulations often arouse our laughter. A recent regulation in Beijing, which allows no more than five passengers to stand within one square meter, is one, and there are more existing regulations such as no more than two flies should been witnessed in one toilet.

Perhaps the authorities made such regulations with good intentions and the Beijing authorities have already explained that they introduced the standard to decide whether more cars are needed. However, if the regulations cannot be implemented, they will only hurt the authority of regulations, thus making more people disdain social order.

One major cause of such a strange phenomenon is that many authorities made decisions from their own imaginations, without having made any investigation of the ordinary people's feelings. Regulations made in this way will naturally become laughing stocks of the people.

Besides, some authorities also hope to solve deep problems with a thin piece of paper and fail to realize some social problems have accumulated for years or even decades and they have to invest energy, instead of simply issuing a regulation, to solve them. Weeks ago, a new regulation in Beijing which said every renter requires at least five square meters is one such example: those driven out of group-rented apartments by the rule have nowhere to go, thus causing new problems.

To change this, the authorities need further investigation before making decisions, and must allow ordinary people to express opinions concerning their own daily lives. Only with the people's participation can similar joke-style regulations disappear.