A needlepoint still-life, donated by the Chinese government, is in a nearby exhibit. Protest organizer...Chen of Los Angeles said he doesn't object to the other items, because they were presented by other people, whereas the statue was chosen by Nixon and seems to be an endorsement of Mao by the U.S. government – exactly what [Library director Tim] Neftali [sic] said he wants to avoid.Let's be absolutely clear about this. The Chinese communist regime donated the framed needlepoint (showing President Nixon's 1972 meeting with Mao) in 1991, two years after the Tiananmen Square massacre. But that depiction of Mao is okay, whereas the statue is not because it was approved by the former President who formulated the opening to China considered by virtually every expert as a progressive hallmark of the Cold War (and who went back to China in the fall of 1989 to denounce the hardliners who ordered the Tiananmen tanks to roll). If I were Chen and his fellow protesters, who were actually wearing shirts commemorating Tiananmen Square, I'd be more offended by the gift from the butchers of Beijing.
Thursday, October 1, 2009
Good Mao, Bad Mao
You need a degree in semiotics to figure out what Kai Chen's problem is with the images of Mao Zedong in the Nixon Library. Reporting about a demonstration by 12 people outside the Library today, the Orange County Register writes: