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A  Chinese univesity student’s thoughts on money and government:

Materialism:

I’m not willing to spend one more dollar except for necessities, that’s not because I don’t have that money, that’s because I want to save, I’m not the guy who spoils money and is living in a heaven-like house as they believe. The whole family, my parents and grandparents, told me to rely on myself and support myself after graduation. With my children I wouldn’t care about their grades, but about their personality, they shouldn’t be selfish and mean. I won’t expect my son to be very powerful and rich.

Government:

Everyone is questioning government policy, but most teenagers care more about their benefits rather than the country. They do complain about unfair policies. If they had the same benefits with those special people they wouldn’t complain. I’m different from my friends because I’m rich enough and I’m able to get out of the system. People hate powerful and rich people, so after they realized I’m able to go abroad to study, some of them came to fawn on me, some just say “Oh, your father is a rich guy” (meaning they believe I have no achievements and abilities). I know those are not actually real friends, my friends love me and I love them, we understand each other. I’m not willing to spend one more dollar except for necessities, that’s not because I don’t have that money, that’s because I want to save, I’m not the guy who spoils money and is living in a heaven-like house as they believe. The whole family, my parents and grandparents, told me to rely on myself and support myself after graduation. With my children I wouldn’t care about their grades, but about their personality, they shouldn’t be selfish and mean. I won’t expect my son to be very powerful and rich.

I’m not sure if I was critical of the government or not before coming to the States two years ago, I can’t really remember. Two things really changed me–Sina microblog and the journey to America. Lots of famous people like Kaifu-Lee (who is well known in China, he used to work for Microsoft and Google) have microblogs. I can use their ideas for reference. All kinds of people have microblogs, I witness them and I can analyze and enrich my knowledge. For the journey to the States, the open Internet is the most terrible enemy for Chinese government, and I finally learned why. We can’t get Google, Facebook, and Twitter, but the faded corner of those dark historical issues could be discovered anytime. I just didn’t know why they have to “whitewash” themselves when I was in China, but now I get information more or less. I don’t work for any organization or individuals that are against Chinese government, but those things are really awful.

My generation is more open, can receive more information. The last generation experienced the change to the new China since 1949, whereas we got the information from textbooks. We only know what the government wants us to know. I only heard about Tiananmen Square after I came to the US. It depends on your education and what your parents want. Fro me I want to earn lots of money and I also want democracy.

High School Life:

We do nothing but study in high school. We get up at 6 am, to bed at the school at 11 pm, we go home 5:40 pm on Saturday, and come back to school at 8 am on Sunday. In the third year [senior year] we get rid of Saturday night. We have two weeks summer break and New Year’s. You get used to that lifestyle. We have PE class but often a teacher will take it away for math, chemistry, or physics except when it’s raining, and they he asks if we want PE. The boys play basketball during breaks, 10 to 15 minute break between classes. Girls prefer to stay in the classroom and chat. My father taught me the importance of exercise—playing tennis. Our teacher said it’s not good for kids not to have PE but we have so many kids, so much competition to study hard and get a good grade, and compete with richer kids. Parents push kids to study harder and harder. Zheyu, 20, m, China

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