Communist China: A force for good or evil? Students respond (VIDEO)
- Campus Reform asked University of Maryland students about Mao Zedong on the 70th anniversary of Communist China.
- Some students didn’t know who Mao while others weren’t sure how they felt about the communist milestone.
- Students also shared their thoughts on their school’s Confucius Institute, which has come under scrutiny.
Campus Reform’s Eduardo Neret went to the University of Maryland-College Park on the 70th anniversary of the People’s Republic of China to see how students there felt about the communist regime and its former leader Mao Zedong.
UMD-College Park is one of the dozens of college campuses in the U.S. to house a Confucius Institute, which American intelligence agencies say the Chinese communist government uses to spread its own propaganda. In 2018, President Donald Trump signed into law a bill that prohibits universities that house Confucius Institutes from receiving some federal funding.
Despite objections to Confucius Institutes by U.S. intelligence agencies, multiple lawmakers, and the president, some students expressed support for the presence of the University of Maryland's Confucious Institute, while others were empathetic of the Chinese communist regime.
While a few students didn't have much to say about the 70th anniversary of Mao Zedong, who is estimated to have killed as many as 80 million people, others said they were "proud" of the anniversary.
Another student claimed, “if it’s been working for 70 years, they must be doing something right.”
Other students, however, were very critical of the oppressive regime.
“It’s pretty somber...a lot of people have been living in poverty because of Mao’s revolution,” one student said.
Another told Neret that even though she is a “leftist,” she is no fan of Mao: “I think that his methods were insane, that he was incredibly violent. He was very against spiritualism and religion, which I also don’t agree with.”
Neret also asked students about their school’s Confucius Institute.
“What they’re doing is spreading propaganda on American college campuses,” one student said.
A different student welcomed the presence of the Confucius Institute on campus, saying, “our campus is a really diverse place."
Follow the author of this article on Twitter: @eduneret