…Is A Repressed Capitalist!
Seeing Red In The People’s Republic Of China
I’m about to violate at least two precepts related to blogging today: I’m going to be a bit “off topic” and I will cross the great political divide. As this is the most personal of my blogs, I am hoping that you will indulge me just this once. At least for the next five minutes or so.
Search Engine Redirects — Government Retaliation?
In the news today there are reports that three U.S.-based search engines — Google, Yahoo! and Microsoft — are currently being hijacked in China and users there are being redirected to Baidu, a search engine owned by the Chinese government. According to a published report, this activity began soon after President Bush awarded the exiled Tibetan spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, with the Congressional Gold Medal, the highest civilian award offered by lawmakers.
Calling For An End To Religious Repression
In a highly symbolic ceremony held in the rotunda of the U.S. Capitol building, President Bush praised the Dalai Lama while calling for an end to religious repression. Certainly, the meeting with the Dalai Lama and the words the president used were considered provocative by the Chinese government, thus the apparent retaliation against the search engines.
What Is Really Going On
I’m certain that many people are dismissing what President Bush did as yet another of his political missteps. This isn’t about Iraq, the war on terror, or illegal immigration, rather the president’s action underscores two things related to China:
- We in the west are highly ignorant to what is going on in China. Thousands of people are imprisoned even executed for their religious beliefs, whether they are called Buddhist, Falun Gong1, Christian, or Muslim. Religious intolerance is unwritten government policy and has been in place since the communists took power in 1949.
- Doing business with China means doing business on their terms. You may gain the right to offer your products or services in China, but it must be done according to their laws.2 I’m not saying that a company shouldn’t do business in and with the People’s Republic of China, but it is clear that you are expected to behave in a way you wouldn’t in a democratic society.
Am I being anti-Chinese? No, but as a Christian I am against religious persecution no matter what the belief. I know that the “little red book” pictured above isn’t the backbone of Chinese politics today, but state control is.
My Google Analytic stats for this site are telling — while the number of visitors from Pacific Rim countries is good, e.g. the Philippines, Taiwan, Singapore, Malaysia, Korea and Japan, I receive no traffic from mainland China. Other webmasters have observed the same giving support to what is widely known, but rarely discussed: China continues to repress her people.
Photo Credit: Meghan Anderson-Colangelo; Albuquerque, New Mexico
Footnotes: 1 Falun Dafa Information Center
2 Google Censors Itself For China
3 “New” China: Same Old Tricks