This letter is a response to “Chinese student organizations denounce Dalai Lama as commencement speaker.”
I am a Chinese student from the University of Georgia. Here is a comment (in English) and a personal statement (in Chinese, I’m sure you have some people who read Chinese) which I would like to share with The Triton.
As one of the “countless Chinese students in the U.S.”, despite studying in another school, I very much like the idea of having His Holiness the Dalai Lama to speak on such a special occasion and I feel insulted by being forcibly represented by the Chinese Students and Scholars Association (CSSA) which states that “our” feelings have been hurt. Here are a few points:
1) It is intolerant of the CSSA to demand the university cancel an apolitical spiritual speech by a speaker whose politics they dislike.
2) In disparaging this globally-revered sage, they lack the fundamental respect for the culture and religion of the Tibetan people.
3) It would be His Holiness’s right to speak freely and truthfully on his people’s plight, including China’s ongoing demolition of the Larung Gar Academy and its recent arrest of Tashi Wangchuk, an educator of the Tibetan language.
4) It was the ruling Communist Party that compromised the territorial integrity of China by establishing a Soviet satellite state during the Japanese invasion and splitting the country across the Taiwan Strait through a bloody rebellion.
5) The Communist regime, which my Chinese peers in your university are actually defending, is no synonym for the motherland of the Tibetans and Chinese whose lost their beloved ones in the barbarian air raid on the Byams-chen-chos-skor-gling Temple in 1956 and the murderous bloodbath of Beijing streets in 1989.
6) My experience of being a young dissident who narrowly escaped prison keeps on reminding me how fortunate I am now to live in America and have the freedom to speak without fears.
7) The Communist regime is kidnapping, torturing and imprisoning less fortunate millennial dissidents at home, including my ethnic Korean friend Kwon Pyong, an Iowa State University alumni, who is waiting behind bars for an imminent trial on his outspoken opposition to Communism.
8) The CSSA, a self-proclaimed apolitical independent student body, admits on Chinese social media that it reports to a foreign consulate and follows its instructions, violating the law and school rules.
9) Their attempt to curb free speech on an American campus indicates that the evil hand of Communist censorship has reached us by the agency of patriotic Chinese students.
Yi Sulaiman Gu is a member of the Independent Federation of Chinese Students and Scholars and a student at the University of Georgia.
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