(Clearwisdom.net) I have been perplexed by the peculiar, patriotic behavior of some overseas Chinese to whom we have clarified the truth.

They believe that we should only say good things about China, and they have difficulty dealing with people who criticize China in any way. They label those who criticize China as “traitors or betrayers” or as “having ulterior motives.” They often revel in the excitement of seeing China and Chinese people becoming strong. They become angry at anyone who criticizes China. If someone says that there are too many mining disasters in China, they say that those were due to accidents. When someone mentions the corruption of Chinese officials, they say that embezzlement also occurs in democratic countries. When someone says there is no democracy in China, they say that totalitarianism helps productivity. When someone mentions what happened to the poorly-built school buildings during the Wenchuan Earthquake, they say that mishaps occur everywhere. They stubbornly believe that China is already a developed country and argue irrationally in support of the Chinese regime. They show no concern for the sufferings of the average citizens and overlook increasingly serious social issues in China. They have confused the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) with China and believe that loving the Communist Party is what it means to be patriotic.

When talking to Westerners, those Chinese people only mention the long history of China and the extraordinary Chinese culture. They only talk about the Chinese GDP and foreign currency reserve. They want to improve China's image by shining a positive light on the Communist regime.

I did some research and believe I have finally rooted out the causes of this behavior.

  1. I believe it is due primarily to the influence of the evil Communist specter in their minds, as well as the CCP’s practice of keeping its people in the dark. Additionally, the CCP directly or indirectly controls many overseas Chinese media, which exert a brainwashing influence on the overseas Chinese. These media often eulogize the CCP, in contrast to independent media that truthfully report the news in China. These government-controlled media have made some overseas Chinese unwilling to accept reality.
  2. There is one group of individuals who, living in unfamiliar foreign lands and facing unfamiliar foreign people, feel lonely and increasingly long for their homeland and hometowns. So, patriotism has become a very good thing on which they can rely to console themselves regarding their feelings and emotions. They use this “patriotism” to satisfy the longing for their hometowns. They eagerly wish to hear news of China becoming prosperous and strong. They feel proud of the achievements their homeland has made. Faced with living in a strange land, with unfamiliar customs and culture, their vision has become blurred, and they no longer make a distinction between China and the CCP—they mistakenly take the CCP to be China. They have gradually developed the view that criticizing the CCP is the same as criticizing China, so they can't tolerate any criticism of the CCP. Criticism of the CCP hurts their feelings. It sparks emotions about their homeland and damages their sense of national identity, sense of pride, and sense of belonging, so they have difficulty emotionally accepting this. When it comes to how bad it actually is for the common Chinese people inside of China, they feel it is insignificant. It seems to them that those things have nothing to do with the homeland they loved. They need to protect and nurture their feelings toward the homeland.
  3. There is another group of individuals who, after going abroad with great expectations, have found that they cannot truly become a part of the mainstream in the foreign countries they have gone to. They feel that those foreign countries still don’t consider them as their own countrymen, even after they have been there for a long time. They then willingly or unwillingly re-label themselves as “Chinese.” They feel that, although they have become citizens of the foreign countries, they are still foreigners and they are still Chinese to the people of the countries they live in. Being aliens, they very much hope that they can be recognized, respected, and included by the people of the foreign countries. But, unable to peel off the label of “Chinese,” they have finally realized the necessity for patriotism; they feel that only a “powerful” China will earn them the respect of the citizens of their adopted countries. Consequently, they do not strongly object to what the communist regime has done to make itself look better, which, they think, can help them save face. On the one hand, they don't need to face the suffering their fellow Chinese have to suffer, such as heavy taxes, the underground rules, the pain of those who have become the slaves of their own houses (that is, the burden of owning a house that is too great for them), persecution by the privileged classes, etc. On the other hand, they can enjoy the benefits of being patriotic. So, if someone criticizes the Communist regime, they feel that these people have smeared China and that it makes them lose face in front of Westerners. They are particularly sensitive to anyone exposing or criticizing the CCP.

We need to kindly clarify the facts of the persecution in ways that target the issues that control the minds of these misguided people.

Regarding those that are “homesick,” we need to avoid hurting their sense of national pride and sense of belonging, as well as their desire to project their feelings and emotions onto their homeland. Our emphasis should be to help them truly realize that their patriotism means their love of the land and the people living on this land, rather than their love of the CCP, which has relentlessly trampled on and persecuted the common citizens of China. They need to realize that the CCP does not equate to our great China. The Communist regime that relentlessly persecutes the Chinese people is not qualified to represent China. Letting the CCP represent China is a disaster to this great country.

Regarding the group of individuals that feel they “don't fit in,” we need to let them know that their “beautification” of the regime’s rule in China and their irrationally arguing for the regime will backfire, given the fact that Westerners are gaining more and more understanding of China. Westerners will see them as misguided and despicable, as “strange creatures,” and won't acknowledge or respect them. No matter how strong its economy may appear, given the regime’s relentless persecution of the Chinese people, the rest of the world will look down on them—and even despise them—for their views! Human rights is all-important to a country's reputation.

January 6, 2011