Biased press, woke universities — no wonder China's students here are big fans of Beijing
In a startling report, Richard Bernstein at RealClearInvestigations reports that Chinese exchange students here are Beijing's biggest boosters.
They're not their parents' Tiananmen generation.
Check out how bad it's gotten:
The appearance at Columbia University last month by two leading Hong Kong pro-democracy activists was drawing to a close when, suddenly, students from mainland China arose from their seats and fervently belted out two tunes, "Song of the Motherland" and China's national anthem, "March of the Volunteers."
The loud singing wasn't on key, but it was on message. Within hours pro-Chinese government websites like Global Times, the leading English-language organ of China's propaganda machinery, posted video of the incident, praising the students for their "patriotic" gesture.
The irony was palpable. Here were Chinese students, living and studying in the West, exercising the freedom to raise a ruckus at an academic conference and implicitly to denounce the pro-democracy yearnings of their Hong Kong counterparts. Their singing echoed the official view of China's authorities, who have branded protesters, including the two who spoke at Columbia, Brian Leung and Joshua Wong, as secessionist "terrorists."
The episode at Columbia, though small in itself, was of a piece with what appears to be a general readiness of many Chinese people, at home and abroad, to express their outrage against what their government deems to be "anti-China" opinions in other countries, dramatically illustrated this month by the chorus of denunciation against the NBA over a team executive's single pro-Hong Kong tweet. But the patriotic demonstrations by Chinese abroad reflect something else: a broad generational cultural shift in China, mostly unexpected and little noticed in the West.
It's disgusting to see that all this is happening in America as Chinese students come here to take technology and acquire skills to use against us, and then openly display their loathing for democracy and freedom in return.
Should the U.S. actually be hosting these people? Is hosting people who are unable to absorb any of America's values, but hypocritically jump up and protest against real freedom fighters as they were free agents a good thing?
Part of the problem, implied in the piece, is that the Chinese students are studying at America's wokest universities. That might explain why they see America as such a terrible place and freedom as such a vile thing. They're taking the snowflakery in, learning that America was founded from the beginning on slavery, hearing nonstop diatribes about racism and oppression, feeling the Bern, and not surprisingly coming to the conclusion that communism is best. Who wouldn't?
The article cites the appeal of nationalism, but the state of American universities cannot be ignored. Imagine being a Chinese student coming here for the first time, having a sort of victim-oppressor mentality from your Chicom education, and then, as you reach the States, finding out it's all...even worse. You'd fit right in, you'd get your As as you denounced America as a racist cesspit, and besides that, you'd make the people controlling the social credit ratings back home very happy. Why wouldn't you adopt the local wokeness as your very own, and cheer the Chicoms? The very atmosphere you'd be in would tolerate nothing else.
That's made it easy for these Chicom students to protest the Hong Kongers for calling for freedom and falsely denouncing them as "terrorists," with the old gray men of Beijing (and the social credit bureaucrats) smiling back home.
They aren't absorbing any American values because the universities they're at have none. Instead, it's this:
Rather than being transformed by exposure to Western values, many Chinese students, swept up in patriotic fervor, seem to be embracing their nation's authoritarianism. Result: Instead of educating a new generation of leaders who might make China more liberal, U.S. schools may be training an oppositional cadre more interested in acquiring American know-how than American values. This is occurring against a larger backdrop in which a resurgent China aggressively trumpets its cultural norms, demanding that foreign businesses — from Google to the NBA — play by its rules.
Bernstein also reports that the Chinese students are disillusioned by the U.S. press here as well, supposedly because they report negatively on China. Let's not mince words here: they report pretty negatively on all America, too, and these students lap up false stories about racially motivated attacks, Russian collusion and treason, and a supposedly bad president elected by deplorables, and similar themes. America is just full of bad guys, a sump of racism and repression, because that's all the press reports. Any questions as to why these snowflakes think China and its communist ways are best?
Another thing that could be brought up is that woke universities actually survive based on full tuition–paying Chinese students, while American students stumble through on loans and aid. The Chinese effectively subsidize the woke universities and all their bloated administrator payrolls to keep reinforcing how bad America is, keeping these places afloat. Cut off the Chinese students and watch these places get a whole lot less woke. That's another reason to get rid of this awful dynamic now in place - of the U.S. universities now manufacturing China's worst militants.
The whole piece is as compellingly written as those opening four graphs, so read the whole thing here.