The Chinese Communist Party newspaper says “Lin has to pay a cost for being tangled with hostile forces against China.” The hostile force is Falun Gong, which the party considers a dangerous cult and has banned in the mainland.
Lin, 25, was prevented late last month from attending the Miss World pageant in Sanya, Hainan. She got as far as Hong Kong, but was denied a visa as she was declared persona non grata by Chinese immigration officials.
A practitioner of Falun Gong, the Hunan native has been very critical of China’s human rights record, and has called for the independence of Tibet and Xinjiang from the Beijing government. Both regions have ethnic minorities who resent domination by the Han majority and the distant Beijing national government.
After Lin published a statement about her situation in Hong Kong, the party’s English language mouthpiece responded with a condescending editorial, calling her “pretty,” but “misguided in her values” and ignorant of her homeland. It blames Lin for acting in a way offensive to China, which resulted in her being barred from participating in the pageant this month.
Maybe the whole episode can be seen from a different perspective since usually a girl in her 20s can’t be too evil-minded. Probably because Lin moved to Canada at a young age, she lacks reasonable understanding of the country where she was born. She may not know that all performers should avoid being involved in radical political issues in the globalized times.
There are always a few people in the entertainment circle that make a name by playing political tricks. But there are principles to be upheld in any social sphere. Lin has to pay a cost for being tangled with hostile forces against China. She must have learned that she couldn’t play up to her circle in Canada through defaming China and then strive to reach the broad mainland market.
Recently some performers in Hong Kong and Taiwan who had similar behavior as Lin were asked to stay away from the mainland, which was a true voice of the society. Lin needs to learn to be responsible for her words and deeds, and for the possible consequences of the path chosen based on her own values.
Lin left China for Canada with her mother at age 13. Her father, however, still lives in Changsha, where she says he has been harassed by police and government officials.
Canada’s Miss World organizers refused to send a runner-up to take Lin’s place, to protest the Beijing government’s action.