We are supposed to write about "Green" and "Sustainable Living" topics on this space but I was so impressed by the Beijing Opening Ceremonies that I felt I should make a post.
Of course China is such a contrast anyway. It makes many of the sustainable living products we sell in our store but is noted for the government's channeling of it's vast population in not always kind ways and it's contribution to world wide pollution is legendary.
The symbolism in the Opening Ceremonies was so rich. That which your average American(certainly me included) could glean included a large emphasis on the children of China and how they are the generation that will see China compete absolutely toe-to-toe with the USA, Europe, Russia, and Japan. These are the children of largely one child per family policies which many activists abhor but would China truly be better off if all those children had brothers and sisters in a nation that must awaken every day and feed > 1 billion?
The symbols of peace were everywhere from the large dove on the stadium floor to the children launching birds in the "overhead surround" of the stadium.
But there were symbols of the might of the country as well. The transition of the PRC flag from the children to the soldiers prior to it's raising was a bit chilling and the entry of those in space suits prior to the world sprouting from the ground reminds us all that China is on it's way to the moon and has shot down one of it's satellites so a space race exists with non- Chinese countries. The symbols your average American could not see due to lack of knowledge of Mandarin or Chinese history may be more compelling.
In closing I feel China is saying that yes we are big and powerful but that we DO want and need the outside world as long as you try to work with us. Certainly the USA and China compete in many ways, sport being the kindest. Technology is perhaps the least kind competition of the two for the future. The country that best learns the mysteries of space travel, nanotechnology, advanced computerization, and robotics will be the leader as the USA has largely been the past 50 years. But the USA is not guaranteed to be the leader for the future. There is also the wild card that China could implode as it has done more than once in the past.
Let's hope the nations of the world can exhibit a harmony as seen on 8-8-08 in Beijing.
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