I posted the first part of this article – I am not a Big Fan of Hate…. I didn’t plan to write the second part, but the hot discussion (52 comments in a week) urged me not to let it go. It is a controversal topic, but also an opportunity for people around the world to express, to listen and to understand about history, war and peace.
Before I start the discussion, I have to put some disclaimers here. Please read before continue and especially before you post a comment.
Please try to be open, try to listen and think before you argue what you believe in, and try to be respectful to others
You are welcome to post your thoughts as a comment. Feel free to disagree with me or anyone else, but do NOT conduct any personal attack. If I found any comment that is attacking someone else as a person, or a nation, instead of his/her opinion, I will have to delete it for the sake of a healthy discussion. The rule is much more strict due to the controversy nature of the topic.
Enough for a disclaimer. Here are my thoughts. It does represent anyone else. Just my view of the world.
I don’t want to pretend to know history, and I don’t want anyone to pretend that they know everything inside out. Everyone just know what they were told, and never know what they are not told yet.
Personally, I admit that the younger generation in China, me included, don’t know the history of China well. For my fellow citizens in China, wait a minute to fight back when you hear something you don’t agree. Just wait a minute to do that, because there are big part of history of China missing in our history book too.
This is my personal experience. I was so shocked during my three weeks in New York in 2004. I saw different versions of the same history which tell totally different story. I don’t completely believe in any of version yet, but the difference itself made me think deeply about what on earth the truth is.
In the past two years, I started to read books I don’t read before, and think hard about matters I didn’t think. What I do is to try to understand more. I don’t argue as I was before, since if the evidence part of the argue was what I was taught. When I started to doubt what I were taught, I need sometime (maybe several years) to re-establish what I believe in. It is the same for people in any country – Japan, U.S., European country – any country if they find another version of history they believe in.
It is painful to accept an another version of history of his/her own country. People tend to refuse to accept anything that is different from what they are taught when they were young. It requires both courage and wisdom to accept it.
On the textbook issue of Japan, I can imagine how a normal young person in Japan (maybe another blogger in Tokyo?) feel when they realize their country ever committed huge crime in another country. He/she may never know that before. I can also imagine how shock a normal person in China will be if he/she was told and convinced about the crime China committed in the past. I know it is painful process, but people have to go through it if we want peace in the future and don’t repeat the dark part of the history again. This is why I insist to open a communication channel instead of spreading out hate.
In the discussion in the first part this article, people talked about war. Recently I watched some movies, and books about WWII. In the Germany v.s. other European countries war, for example, Hitler should be the enemy of not only other countries, but also of German people themselves. When we talk about history, we should not only complain about Germany. German people also victim of the war. It was the people who started the war that need to be complained, sentenced, and punished, not the people. They were taught about how bad Jew are, just as we were taught how people in some countries are.
What I worry about the current China is, hate spread like virus, and people believe by hating other countries, they demonstrate patriotism. The situation is so similar to Germany and Japan before WWII. If you ask me, I would stand out and stop the hate. I know many people will throw stones to my window in the current situation, but I keep doing that, because I believe it is the right thing to do for a better future of the country.
People hate because they are taught to hate. Those who taught the people to hate the other countries are dangerous. People who claim by devoting their lives to whatever the government told them to do are dangerous. Think of those Japanese soldiers and German soldiers in WWII – they claimed they love their country. Their love were so deep that they are even willing to kill thousands to demonstrate their hate. It happened in Japan, it happened in Germany, and please don’t happen again in China. This is what I read from history.
I don’t want to pretend to know history well. I just want to think independently, assembly the limited information I gathered, and seek to be closer to the truth.
Thanks for the comments on this blog. During the last four years, you may saw many comments related to history and to current China. Emotionally, I didn’t feel comfortable when people point their fingers to China (it is common reaction, isn’t it?), but it also gave me opportunities to check out why people say so, what version of history they read, and which version is more likely to be true.
On Love or Hate
The hate dominate logic already caused problems in China. For example, the discrimination of people in other places is a social problem. Some people in Shanghai don’t like people outside Shanghai. It is also true in Beijing, and many other cities. “Shanghai people or Beijing people, which is better?” This kind of discussion is hot on BBS, and is guaranteed to have 100+ replies whenever it is raised. People believe there must be a right answer. There is NO right answer because the question itself is wrong.
I love my family. It does not mean I have to hate my neighbour. I am proud about what people in Shanghai archived, but don’t perceive it as I look down upon people in other region. Can I love all? Why I have to choose only one and hate others?
I never hide my pride to be part of the amazing country of China, and being who I am. But it does not mean I cannot appreciate other countries.
OK. That are some of my random thoughts. I experienced hard time to figure it out, and still seeking for a better answer to many questions.