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Q: There's a lion in the bushes!

It's an old expression that another Biology student once used to illustrate the consequences of behaviourism.

Let's travel back in time. You're a hunter in the Serengeti, hunting is all you know. You rely on your fellow hunters to be able to hunt the big game and bring home meat for your family. The leader of the group shouts: "There's a lion in the bushes!" Everybody runs and cowers in fear, but you see nothing in the bushes.

Naturally, you will take the safest step, and avoid the bushes just like your companions. If you don't there's a chance there actually is a lion in the bushes, and you're the only straggler. You don't want to get eaten, do you.

There's more danger, though. Not from the lion, but from the leader who shouted the warning, If you question him, you are undermining his authority. Even asking where the lion is, or saying you don't see it, might be percieved as a challenge.

Fast forward to modern China, and there are a lot of people shouting warnings all over the place. There's a lion in the foreigner. There's a lion in the cold drink. There's a lion in the rain. There's a lion in the unventilated room. There's a lion in the baby milk powder. There's a lion in the stranger. There's a lion in the Japanese car. There's a lion in the airplane. There's a lion in the xinjiang kebab. There's a lion in the population density.

And sometimes the warnings are true. But often they aren't, and just lead to mass panic. It's this panic that has people so interested, because there is profit in it. Massive profit.

Which brings me back to the leader of the hunting group: The man shouting the warning. Nowadays, there is more at stake than just authority and prestige, and what people should fear more in China, is not the alleged lion, but drawing the ire of the leader. You are more likely to get stabbed in the back by the leader you defy, than mauled by the lion.

When I say I'm leaving China, I usually summarize that it's for my children's education. But it's more than that. Free thought is extremely dangerous in a country that rewards (and assumes) obedience. Defiance and disagreement is dangerous when authorities are unaccustomed to dealing with it in a balanced way, and society's pioneers are at high risk. I don't want my sons to fall victim to this. It would mean that the free thought I instilled in my children, was what led to their failure.

My words often come across as haughty and arrogant, even when I re-read them myself. I hope this example helped to explain the real issues. China has a long way to go to improve its society, and I don't want my sons to fall into the meatgrinder because the status quo (harmony) must be maintained at all costs. If the CCP is willing to crush their own students with tanks on Tiananmen square, this is not a good place to raise children under any circumstances.

4 years 31 weeks ago in  Relationships - China

 
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This is my biggest worry about raising my child in China, this and pollution.

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4 years 31 weeks ago
 
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Maybe this should have been a blog post...

Where is the question?

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4 years 31 weeks ago
 
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blogs take weeks to get approved, if at all. And I wrote this in just over half an hour, so it isn't much of a blog.

Where's the question?
I question Chinese society! And that's dangerous, no question about it. I support your right to question the validity of this question, but the re is no question in my mind that this belongs here.

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4 years 31 weeks ago
 
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This is my biggest worry about raising my child in China, this and pollution.

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4 years 31 weeks ago
 
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Depending on which western nation you hail from, there are equal, if not greater dangers in raising children in them. We westerners think our countries are better than China because that is what we know and was raised with. Chinese people have raised their children in this society and feel it is good too. America's "freedoms" have turn that nation into a land of "Me, Me, Me". Parenting skills have been restricted or thrown out all together. In the UK and Australia, they are combating Islam influences. Snobbery runs the gammet. As an American, I think the USA is hard to raise children in and have them become well balanced. I love indeoendence. But, too much leads to many bigger social issues. Which is what has happened to America. Does China have the answer to raising children...Hell NO! But, to think that our homelands are much better off is questionable too. To go around saying your shit doesn't stink as much as someone elses is just foolish talk. I think a westerner can raise a child in any environment. It is about the parents and the character they instill in the child. Sure, it is harder to do in a country like China. But, it is possible. Foreigners have been doing it for decades and even centuries. Personally, I would find it hard to raise a child anywhere in this world with the current world situations happening. But, if you have children, I wish you all the luck with your family's future. I don't envy the task that lays in front of you.

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4 years 31 weeks ago
 
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I totally agree with you. My wife's niece came over and started asking me questions... like what I thought of Mao and Chinese society... I told her many people hate Mao and I personally don't know much about him... I think he wanted to change China for the better but ended up harming it more than doing good. At least, he somehow united China...

 

She looks at me and says "I think he was a very bad man...". She then goes on to tell me that she wishes she wasn't Chinese because she is always told what to do and has too much pressure to do well in school etc.

 

I couldn't respond to that... I just told her to make the best of the situation but truly it helped me see why so many Chinese want to send their children abroad.

 

Seeing your child's soul slowly die in front of you under the pressure to conform to society must be the worst pain a parent could possibly experience. I know when the CCP educations starts to drain their souls... and it start right around the time they hit middle school.

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4 years 31 weeks ago
 
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Maybe go throw baozi at the lions at the zoo

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4 years 31 weeks ago
 
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