Ladies and Gentlemen:
My topic is Honesty.
As a correspondent of the Qingdao Morning News, I visited Dr. James Gilman, the President of the International Committee for Marco Polo Studies in England. In this picture, this is James, and this is me and we are looking at a dragon’s tooth. This is a true story.
65 years ago, James lived in Qingdao. Then he was only 5 years old. He often visited the Aquarium and was fascinated by a creature on display there, which he thought was a dragon. He was afraid of its sharp teeth and wanted one to keep as a treasure.
He kept the tooth for the next 65 years, but the feeling of guilt at having stolen it was there in the background all through his life. It was always on his conscience, and the feeling intensified as he became older. Finally he decided to put right his childish error. In 2002, he visited Qingdao and returned it to the Aquarium with his sincere apologies. He received a warm welcome.
When James visited Qingdao, I accompanied him all the time and reported on his visit. I was deeply touched by his honesty. It has taught me a lot. I think to err is human. The important thing is to have the courage to admit and correct one’s error.
Honesty is a vital quality of human behaviour. So we should try to keep an honest mind in everything we say and do. I would like to say to all of my friends: Let’s be honest people of good moral character.
Thank you very much.