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What Is True Patriotism?

September 19, 2014 |   By a Chinese Falun Gong practitioner living in the United States

(Minghui.org) It's not an uncommon sight to see Chinese immigrants reading Chinese-language newspapers in the United States. Like immigrants from any other country, their sense of patriotism and attachment to their homeland becomes more pronounced when they are in a foreign land.

So as I talked to my friend about Falun Gong and the fact that it is being persecuted in China, his first reaction was, “What you say may be true, but as a Chinese and a patriot, I don't want our dirty laundry aired in public. What you are doing is harming China's image. Why should we tell Westerners about what's happening with Falun Gong?”

This is one of the main reasons the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) invests so heavily in Chinese language media in Western countries. It wishes to be regarded as one and the same as “China” and, by extension, retain the loyalty of its millions of immigrants.

I explained to my friend that this is--and isn't--a matter of patriotism.

No one wants to see forced organ harvesting, which amounts to the murder of prisoners of conscience on demand, taking place in our homeland. Falun Gong practitioners are exposing this crime so that the killing can be stopped, because that is the right thing to do.

From the perspective of patriotism and doing what's good for China, this is a crime being committed by the CCP authorities. Exposing it and putting a stop to it is bad for the CCP, but good for China.

I tried to put it in a different context. If a German had tried to stop the Holocaust by exposing the presence of Nazi concentration camps during World War II, would he have been doing the right thing, or would he have been bringing shame to Germany? Wouldn't he have been doing the right thing and also acting in the best interests of his country? Would anyone have argued that, because the Nazi party was in control of Germany, exposing its crimes meant damaging Germany?

If no one speaks up and these atrocities in our homeland continue unchecked, what will happen to China? Even more Chinese, Falun Gong practitioners or not, may end up being murdered for their organs, given how profitable the organ trade is. China shouldn't be famous for its organ tourism. Isn't ending this heinous practice acting in the country's and the Chinese people's best interest?

On a broader scale, many Chinese people practiced Falun Gong before the persecution started in 1999. Because Falun Gong teaches Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance, practitioners were model citizens that gave of themselves and contributed positively to the community out of their own free will.

After the persecution started, so many people were forced or deceived into going against their conscience by being part of it. The focus shifted away from doing the right thing and towards being self-serving to ensure one's own survival at the expense of others.

Practitioners are doing their best to reverse this trend, so is that good or bad for China and the world at large?

My friend looked me in the eye and said, “Falun Gong practitioners are the real patriots.”