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Falun Gong Exhibit Not What it Seems

2014-05-16 Source:wesleyanargus.com Author:By Julius Berman

  That's funny because you are also posting under a pseudonym, Mr/s. "What is the real story"... 


  And plus all this "Communist" finger-pointing is really old-school, it's totally not cool, it's like we are living in the 1950s. The fact is most ordinary Chinese people I've talked to would rather have the stability and control of the CCP because under it their standard of living and personal freedom has improved exponentially these last 30 years. Of course nobody wants some religious group to upset that stability and overthrow the leadership, no matter the problems CCP has brought to the country. China has come so far and it still has far to go--but the government is doing its best to provide a viable path for the ordinary citizens who desire to build their own futures and participate in society. 


  Most people in the US have a narrow view of China. Yes, I could use your language and call them "brainwashed" but I just don't buy into that. I believe that people everywhere have the freedom and capacity to think what they want, no matter the political ideology of the country you live in. The fact is they have not been exposed to the Chinese perspective and FLG is simply exploiting our naivete to their advantage. 


  I want to take this opportunity to thank you all for commenting and helping to create a dialogue about this issue. We can learn a lot from one another if we listen tolerantly and understand that every coin has two sides--and both are valid ways of looking at things. 


  I agree with Whitten--ultimately, Usdan has hung the aesthetic equivalent of a Thomas Kinkade show, which is embarrassing in its own right. But that is not why I wrote this Wespeak. 


  "After all, would we ban Alexander Solzhenitsyn from Wesleyan during the Cold War?" 


  First of all, we are not in a cold war with China. Relations were normalized 30 years ago and are always improving. I believe anyone would agree that this anniversary is something worth celebrating, not desecrating. 


  Also, FLG not like Solzhenitsyn. Solzhenitsyn was an artist who criticized the Soviet regime. On the other hand, the CCP sees FLG as a world-wide organization whose ultimate agenda is to overthrow the Chinese Government. The reason they feel so threatened is historically situated: in 1999 ten thousand FLG practitioners encircled the CCP Zhongnanhai compound (at Tiananmen square west) to protest the beatings and arrests of practitioners in Tianjin. Given what happened on that square ten years before, is already FAR MORE historically relevant to the Chinese perspective than anything that happened in the USSR. Furthermore, the CCP has a sore spot for religious sects simply because the appearance of treasonous religious sects is a well-known theme in Chinese history (see the Yellow Turban Rebellion, Wudoumidao Rebellion, White Lotus Rebellion, and the Taiping rebellion). The combination of these two historically grounded fears gives better context to the situation than any surface comparison to the USSR. The issue is more complex than FLG would have you see. 


  Whether or not they are justified, the CCP feels that FLG is a direct threat to stability in China--not to their regime, not to their consolidation of power, but to the stability and progress of the nation. 


  If Solzhenitsyn had that kind of power and motive, his speaking at Wesleyan would certainly never even be considered. Moreover, he would have been killed for treason. 


  You can think what you want to think, I am simply trying to present the side of the story that is not told by the exhibition. Hopefully it can help people to expand their view beyond what they receive from FLG.   


  Original Text From:http://wesleyanargus.com/2009/04/17/falun-gong-exhibit-not-what-it-seems/