Saturday, October 23, 2010

I'll "Nobel Prize" Your Ass!

So Liu Xiaobo got the prize this year. Hey even i had only learned of him a bit last year, and so was surprised to see him thrust into the limelight recdently w/ the Nobel Prize. So obviously, the
the guy who writes Charter 19 is gonna piss off the Chinese govt by criticizing its very dictatorian (not a real word, i know) foundations.

So what exactly is this thing that he wrote?
Wikipedia sez:
Charter 19 calls for 19 changes to improve human rights in China, including an independent legal system, freedom of association and the elimination of one-party rule.

Well sounds like a pretty natural step in the evolution of China, but naturally it's also seen as an attack on the state. I've been surprised and impressed to see that a few students were aware of this guy and the recognition that he might not be the villain that the state media portrayed him as.

Here's a tidbit of his statement to the court last year when he was sent to prison.

But I still want to tell the regime that deprives me of my freedom, I stand by the belief I expressed 20 years ago in my hunger strike declaration – I have no enemies, and no hatred. None of the police who monitored, arrested and interrogated me, the prosecutors who prosecuted me, or the judges who sentence me, are my enemies. While I'm unable to accept your surveillance, arrest, prosecution or sentencing, I respect your professions and personalities. This includes the prosecution at present: I was aware of your respect and sincerity in your interrogation of me on 3 December.

For hatred is corrosive of a person's wisdom and conscience; the mentality of enmity can poison a nation's spirit, instigate brutal life and death struggles, destroy a society's tolerance and humanity, and block a nation's progress to freedom and democracy. I hope therefore to be able to transcend my personal vicissitudes in understanding the development of the state and changes in society, to counter the hostility of the regime with the best of intentions, and defuse hate with love.

I firmly believe that China's political progress will never stop, and I'm full of optimistic expectations of freedom coming to China in the future, because no force can block the human desire for freedom. China will eventually become a country of the rule of law in which human rights are supreme. I'm also looking forward to such progress being reflected in the trial of this case, and look forward to the full court's just verdict – one that can stand the test of history.

While recognizing that China is pissed off that YET AGAIN (Dalai Lama) that the Nobel Prize seems to be being used as a political tool to hurt the Chinese people's feelings, you have to admit that the statement above kinda sounds like the voice of the kind of person who would be worthy of a Nobel Peace Prize.

the full read is also pretty interesting if you have time, and my coworker even alluded to it being a bit of a tear-jerker.

His class all read LXB's statement as well as the police statement, and compared their msgs. They rated him as a hero 1-10. One student gave him a 9, which was basically calling himself a revolutionary. Another student told his teacher he wanted to give him a 10, but was afraid of his classmate's reaction, so in class, he publicly stated a 5. Who knows: maybe many students want to give him a 10, but are afraid of being seen as anti-communist. who knows.

Just one lucky student of mine will have the opportunity to research and report on him later this wk, in my Heroes research proj, which i'm pretty stoked on. Other heroes to be researched will include Constance McMillan, Harvey Milk, the Dalai Lama, Che Guevera, David Suzuki and other classics like Ghandi, Geronimo, Mother Teresa, Oprah, and the gang. This is what happens when Mr Wang decides who's a hero or not.

More themeless info.

well, i've been remiss.
i've been busy in bj, but not feeling particularly inspired re: writing. Partly because i was hesitant to write about such things like the tensions between Q and i which went on for quite a long time. That was kind of a downer, and had me stewing in my own head more than was comfortable.

But we did work things through, which was very good, not too easy, and required some humility, proper listening, and acceptance from my end for sure. W/out going into details (sorry), it was one of those cases where the 2 sides of the story were both true, but looked so so so different.

At any rate, things seem to be bk to normal now, and we're enjoying a pleasant, if chilly and rainy weekend.

Also, on the plus side, is i have a new friend. My musician friend Wang Yuqi, who's rather a zen figure introduced me to this American guy James and we've been getting on famously. James is a writer, and he largely writes about music and artists in Chinese. Yesterday he and Yuqi came over, we meditated, shot the breeze about animal spirits etc, then went off w/ my brother to see Q's new gallery and its latest exhibit, before heading off for din and a jazz concert.

Trying to get my life bk on track. Trying to floss daily again. Hoping to run at least 1/wk. Hoping to start up a wkly meditation. So far, the floss is going at at least 80% success, so we'll see how the rest falls into place. Wish me luck.

Other + news: instead of buying a reasonably priced slick-looking fixie bike, i decided to just soup up my road bike. Who wants to have fun? I just want to get from A to B fast and safe.

It's still a one-speed since it's never had derailleurs since i got it, but i sawed off the drops, got new brake levers and a less than rock-hard seat. It's rockin' the casbah now. I put a lot of attention into details like scratching everything up w/ sandpaper and using packing tape to make everything look like shit, 'cause now i'll be downed if someone realizes my French bike is better than the piece of crap it looks like and steals it.

Oh grey-looks-like-a-piece-of-shit-bike, how i love you!