Thursday, January 22, 2009
China Censors Obama's Speech
When President Obama was officially inaugurated into his new position, it wasn't just 80% of America that celebrated. In most of the rest of the world, people had eagerly awaited the passing of the Bush administration and were thrilled when Obama took the oath of office. While the people celebrated, their leaders sent Obama congratulations and their willingness to work with him for a better world.
But China was an exception. The Chinese leaders loved George Bush. After all, the Bush policies allowed them to create a huge trade imbalance with the U.S., and make tons of money by dumping their cheap junk and poisonous products on the American populace.
But they don't know what to make of Obama yet. He seems to worry the Chinese leaders. In fact, they are so worried that they censored the Chinese translations of Obama's inauguration speech on both the news and the internet.
When Obama said, "Recall that earlier generations faced down fascism and communism not just with missiles and tanks, but with sturdy alliances and enduring convictions", the words "and communism" magically disappeared from the Chinese version. It was as if Obama was talking only about fascist governments.
The phrase "blame their society's ills on the West" also failed to make it into the Chinese text, as did the sentence "To those who cling to power through corruption and deceit and the silencing of dissent, know that you are on the wrong side of history."
The whole thing makes me glad to be an American. Our government is not always right -- Bush was a disaster, and I'm sure Obama will do some things I don't like. But I always have the right to say what I want without being censored. And we always have the right to hear what others say, without our government altering it.
I think the Chinese are making a big mistake. In this modern world, you can't hide the truth forever.