I do admit that I am more accepting of China than most I know and believe that there are many things taking place there and in countries in which it is involving itself through Roads and Belt programs of which many in the west are highly suspicious. I read regularly about what China is saying it is doing and how what they are doing is being interpreted by outsiders. I have visited China four times in the past 18 years and travelled widely in the country and seen the incredible changes taking place there, most of them, from what I can see, not only said by officials to be beneficial to the Chinese people, but beneficial to the Chinese people as many Chinese see things.
China most definitely deserve criticism for some policies and actions but, staying with these policies and issues for a length of time often leads to very different understandings of what is taking place than the reporting in the American media and by U.S. government officials portray.
The Hong Kong protests and government actions against them are probably as bad as they seem as reported. Of course, the history of Hong Kong and how the British involved themselves there and elsewhere in China should be taken into consideration but usually are not. Hong Kong is what Hong Kong is, not because Chinese made it that way but how western powers interference in China made it to be.
China is a declared communist state that has, since its formation as a modern country, tried to prevent religion from having a role in the society and, though the methods for suppressing religion may not be kind and gentle or even acceptable, one needs understand the reason of government religious intolerance and this in light of the problems religion causes in so many supposedly democratic states, the United States and, more recently, the Turkish Republic, for example and across the world, the modern Middle East being a good example.
There is a lot that could be said about these particular issues but one that has had me thinking and wondering a lot lately is one being widely reported, the reports most often explaining the Chinese Social Credit system as an apocalyptically repressive attempt to control people. Being something of a fan of China despite its flaws–we here have some of our own–and, too, a fan of individual freedom, I was thinking I might have to revise my estimation of the Chinese government and the whole of the Chinese system.
As I usually do, I wondered how much of the reporting was accurate reporting and how much of it was western propaganda of the kind used so often to show the United States in good light by showing how much worse things in China were. I knew that it would be hard to argue for China with those I usually argue about China considering the news as it was being reported. And then I heard a story on NPR one night that was much the same telling as the one offered in the Wired article attached below.
It is worth reading not only to better understand the Social Credit issue but also to think about how to read stories concerning what is going on in China and what China really is.