A Thought for Your Consideration
I would like lovers of freedom and the political independence of Tibet and other oppressed minorities victimized by the PRC to consider renaming so-called "Tibetan Uprising Day" as Tibetan Defense Day or similar title. I think that the term "uprising" connotes an already defeated or submissive people or nation rising against their rulers who have already defeated them.. as with the unfortunate cases of many First American tribes and African American slaves. Do you think the "Tibetan uprising" is in the same category as "Indian uprising" or "slave uprising"? It strikes me as colonialist terminology for putting down the "uppity natives" as if they were children talking back to their parents.
March 10, 2001 Kissimmee, Florida
I joined Jack Churchward to witness and protest at the front entrance of Florida Splendid China at noon on March 10, 2001. We were the only demonstrators this day. It was a clear, temperate Saturday, the kind of day you would expect to attract a large crowd to an outdoor entertainment park like Splendid China.
Much to my surprise there were very few visitors to the amusement park during the hours that Jack and I stood with our placards and flags. All the cars and trucks that drove by could not help but notice our presence as they approached the park entrance gate. Almost all slowed down to read the messages proclaiming freedom for Tibet, Taiwan, Eastern Turkestan and Southern Mongolia. It appeared that many of the visitors merely entered the free parking lot and stopped to look around the second-rate tourist shops in the mock Chinese village out of curiosity. The tourists didn't seem to buy much. Sales were not helped by the Chinese staff who didn't speak much English either. The staff were not especially attentive to customers and seemed distracted by lengthy telephone conversations in Chinese. Lingering by the ticket window, I did not see any groups or families entering the park paying the admissions fee nor did I see many already in the park itself. The place looked like it was not doing good business, at least not in the day-time.
No Splendid China staff approached us during the hours we were demonstrating at the front gate. Neither did anyone speak to us when we visiting the shopping mall village.
Construction is under way at the intersection of the main avenue from Orlando and the road that leads to the entrance of Splendid China. When it is complete, it will be a comfortable and strategic location to picket and demonstrate for the minorities oppressed by the PRC.
I have been following the activities of the CACCP by internet from Seoul, Korea where I have resided for twelve years. The Republic of Korea government and South Korean admirers and supporters of His Holiness the Dalai Lama of Tibet have felt the arrogance and personal aggressiveness of officials of the PRC quite directly. For years, PRC ambassadors to the ROK and their embassy staff have successfully stifled all attempts to invite the Dalai Lama to Korea, even as a religious leader and educator. Year after year, the South Korean Ministry of Foreign Affairs has always buckled to Chinese pressures to refuse His Holiness a visa for fear of some kind of trade or diplomatic retribution should they allow the monk to enter Korea. In June 2000, the Dalai Lama accepted an invitation extended by a coalition of Korean religious and civic leaders to visit Korea as a civilian to lecture about world peace and interfaith harmony. The Korean government has quashed their efforts. President Kim Dae Jung, the latest Nobel Peace Prize laureate, too, has not supported His Holiness's visit either, much to the chagrin of Kim's admirers who judge this a moral failure for a man whom many considered a rare leader of integrity and peace in Northeast Asia. To learn more about efforts to invite the Dalai Lama to Korea, see www.tibetfriends.org
We look forward to participating in future demonstrations at Florida Splendid China until Floridians and all Americans realize how the PRC has been distorting history. The PRC is whitewashing unspeakable atrocities it is perpetrating against smaller indigenous populations of Asia.
Dr. Frank Tedesco