Despite intense protests from civilians around the globe, most politicians and people of $tature (hey, LeBron) have chosen to ignore their eyes and ears (and respiratory systems) and stay quiet about our little problem in the Orient.
China is killing itself.
This is nothing new, it’s no revelation, and shouldn’t shock. The level of environmental damage done daily in the world’s longest standing great society is unreal. Pollution is terrible, and only flipping charts upside down can dispute this. Still, China remains defiant in the face of facts. The deputy director of Beijing’s Environmental Protection Bureau recently informed the New York Times it was no big deal. “Just tell everybody they don’t have to worry,” were Du Shaozhong’s exact words–everything’s great because we say so.
Well, he’s wrong. China has long had a corrupt goverment prone to covering its mistakes with deafening silence, apathetic arrogance, and if necessary, more covert tactics. Scientificblogging.com writes “China is, by its reported numbers, the second largest producer of greenhouse gases behind the US. They may be number one because we rely on their statistics…but now scientists are using satellites to try and keep China’s numbers honest.”
Just as intelligent folks around the world know there’s a disconnect between most Americans and the policies of President Bush, we must realize a cavern the size of the Grand Canyon exists between what the Chinese people want for themselves–health, happyness, an honorable way to make a living, education, etc.–and what the Chinese government wants for itself.
The Beijing Games will showcase China’s problems. The nation boasts tremendous economic power, but it simultaneously ignores millions of impoverished Chinese. The same can be said about America, but at least one could say it on record. Human rights and freedom of speech certainly don’t fall in line with the world’s biggest communist dictator’s modus operandi.
What should the world do? Boycotts have and will be suggested from all sides, but a full-scale international political effort isn’t going to happen. Too many rich people have too much on the line to worry about pesky issues such as poverty and pollution. President Bush has postured about avoiding the opening ceremonies, but really, what will that do other than strain the relationship between the world’s present elite and the NEXT anointed superpower? Action won’t be taken by those with ultimate power until action is taken by those with collective power.
We. The People.
I’m calling for a boycott of dollars and sense. Don’t buy your latest team USA jersey, don’t tune in to every moment, don’t read every article posted on the internet about the Games. This will take attention away from the true purpose of the Games–international competition in a pure form–but this is merely unfortunate, and change requires sacrifice. Through OUR boycott a message will be sent. No blood for oil? How about we stop spending $4.00 at the pump like it’s no big deal. No air to breathe? Don’t allow temporary stops in production to fool you. It’s time to send a message.
Go green or go home.