Tibet Will Be Free (the SFT Blog!)

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Thursday, September 01, 2005

Awesome Update on Cal Fair Story Below

Chris Mckenna of Tibet Justice Center: "Now the editorial board has jumped in on our side…. I was trying to get a hold of them earlier to see how the school reacted (or if they have reacted). I’ll keep everyone posted."

A great, on-target Editorial from the Sacramento Bee:

Editorial: Sensitivity lesson

Sac State gives China a free pass

Published Wednesday, August 31, 2005

College administrators can't be expected to be fully up to date on international politics. But those at Sacramento State's College of Continuing Education who helped arrange display space for blatant Chinese propaganda at the State Fair fell woefully short.

The exhibit - "Folkways of Tibet" - shows the kinds of artifacts one expects in such a display. But it omits how Tibet became part of China: It was subjugated by the communist regime that took power in 1949. Nor was there a hint of how Beijing has stifled Tibet: installed a puppet spiritual figure, browbeat other countries into shunning the exiled Dalai Lama, destroyed thousands of monasteries, killed countless Tibetans (some estimates exceed 1 million) and moved hundreds of thousands of ethnic Chinese into Tibet to dilute its indigenous character.

It's not surprising that the Chinese government, which helped plan and pay for the exhibit in cooperation with a graduate of California State University, Sacramento, failed to include any of those troubling facts in the exhibit. But it added insult to falsehood by including a film in which one Tibetan says: "Had it not been for the Communist Party, this beautiful life now would not be possible."

Someone at CSUS should at least have checked out the content of this travesty, which Alice Tom, dean of continuing education, said had not been done. She did, however, offer an astonishing ex-post-facto rationale for why the exhibit is a success: "We've created something for people to learn from."

That adds fantasy to slipshod planning. It's likelier that for every person who may have been sensitized to the reality in Tibet, there are far more who, seeing the exhibit out of context, may believe what China's propagandists want them to. It's not only the students at CSUS who need continuing education.

If you don't want to register (it's free but still...) you can cut and paste the link into a browser window and it should go straight to the page:
http://www.sacbee.com/content/opinion/story/13498363p-14338938c.html

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