People are worth less than dogs?

5 Dec

Raising dogs has become a social phenomenon in China and perhaps a “marker of how quickly this nation is hurtling through its transformation from impoverished peasant to first-world citizen,” said an article in the New York Times.

With the increased number of households keeping dogs as their pets even family members, it is far easier to find dog-treat stores, dog websites, dog social networks, dog swimming pools and even a bring-your-dog cinema and a bring-your-dog bar in Beijing recently.

According to Beijing officials, there are 900,000 dogs in the city and their numbers growing 10 percent a year. “And those are the registered ones. Countless thousands of others are unlicensed.”

A way to relieve

With the rapid rhythm of modern life, people require a way to get rid of the busy work and stressful burdens, well having a dog is a good choice. Playing with your little puppy in the yard after coming back home, giving them a hug as they shake their lovely tales, enjoying the sunshine with the dog sleeping on your feet, warm and satisfied.

Many owners also say China’s one-child policy has fanned enthusiasm for dog ownership as a way to provide companionship to only children in young households and to fill empty nests in homes whose children have grown up.

Those young people who love dogs to death are dubbed gouyou, or “dog friends”. Dogs become a way to display one’s tastes and, not least of all, a way to meet people with similar interests.

Claim on limited space

However, that does not to say that there are no opponents. Virtually a spirited debate between dog lovers and those who believe that dogs “are seriously disturbing the normal lives of other people” has come into notice.

Pets are claiming on limited space to survival. Some say “the resources that you conserve from having less people, you give to dogs? This is a very serious problem. Are you saying that people are worth less than dogs?”

No equal relationship

Many masters do not shoulder the obligation to nurture and provide professional training to their pets, in contrast, they just render their pets lonely and miserable, even abusing their pets for fun.

With the goal to pursue the maximum profit, thousands of animals have been hunted and killed which triggered the horrible situation that many rare species have been endangered even extinct.

To avoid more tragedies and trouble, the amount of pets in cities should be controlled. What is the best approach to protect and cherish animals deserve our humanity’s deep consideration.

 

Much happier to be “little Emperor” or “Princess small”?

3 Dec

Only children are happier than those with brothers or sisters, says the Institute for Social and Economic Research.

According to this study, sibling rivalry can have a serious effect on a child’s emotional well-being.

“Over half of the children surveyed said they had been bullied by a sibling, and one in three said they had been hit, kicked or pushed on regular occasions. Others complained of name-calling and having their belongings stolen.”

The project also found that seven out of 10 teenagers are “very satisfied” with their lives and children from ethnic minorities are happier than their white counterparts.

Compared with Britain where homes with just one child occupy nearly half of all families, Chinese people have to abide by the one-child policy which is seeing a little change as this policy seems to  be more and more defective.

To me, I don’t believe one-child policy is beneficial for children being nurtured as we have to be alone with the lack of sharing experience, not along self-reliant and self-improvement.

Those children who is not the only focus in their family probably have to compete for parental attention or share bedrooms with a sibling, which is one of the reason for them being unhappy.

However, just like the old saying goes, “Every family has a skeleton in the cupboard”, if you are the only child to your parents, you may feel lonely while if not you are reluctant to share with your siblings.

Virtually, the family which has only one child seems to have more problems, for instance, in China, almost every child is the apple of their family’s eye, being waited on hand and foot, which could make them bossy and spoiled and obviously this is not doing themselves any favours.

Things may be different if we have brothers or sisters as we can learn how to share with each other and how to help each other, the most important is how to take care of themselves.

Every coin has two sides, both the children in China and those in the UK have their own trouble with different experience of childhood.

If you are the only child in your family, then learn to be independent and take care of others as well; if not, happy to tell you, I envy you that you have brothers or sisters who can accompany you with your life.

 

“Please buy back my life”

2 Dec

Kim Kardashian is going to die a little. So is Khloé, Lady Gaga, David LaChapelle, Justin Timberlake, Usher, Serena Williams and Elijah Wood.

stylized full-color photographs of celebrities lying in coffins, seemingly lifeless, with eyes closed

How can buy back their lives?

Text, please.

This is the “Digital Death” on World AIDS Day, hold by those celebrities who indicated that they would stop using Twitter and facebook and sacrificing their digital life in response to the singer-songwriter Alicia Keys to raise money for her charity, Keep a Child Alive, which finances medical care and support services for children and families affected by H.I.V. and AIDS in Africa and India.

They will not wake up, they say, until their fans donate $1 million.

The strategy here is not just to shock people into paying attention but to enable them to give by doing, as Ms. Keys puts it, “what you always do.”

“You’re always texting your friends,” she says. “Now, you’re going to text to Buy Life.”

All that fans have to do is text the first name of the celebrity they’re “mourning” to 90999, and $10 will be donated.

It seemed that there are various ways to help the vulnerable and the poor, but this is a really instant way of grabbing people’s compassion.

We always ask what kind of role should those celebrities play in the society in addition to please the public.

I think their impact matters as they are followed by such a huge number of fans who are always respond to their idols’ appeal; therefore making a difference.

Similarly, in China now, increased number of super stars are aware of doing charity by using their power.

This is a good signal.

No matter whether they do it out of pursuing reputation or just out of their heart, they all play the leading role and make youngsters know what should they do like their idols. At least, they raised people’s awareness to pay more attention to the people in need.

I believe the list keeps growing

Change yourself before change the rule

1 Dec

Did the female journalists’ style of dress often attract more attention than the work they did?

Yes, indeed. women do get some problems.

They seldom have leading roles in journalism and get disproportionately little news coverage. Have you thought the possible reasons for this?

I have.

In the past two days, I prepared for a presentation about “women in media” which shed some new light on me actually.

According to the statistics from the European federation of journalism, the average number of women journalists in EU countries is almost equal to the number of men, but the growing number of women in leading positions is slow.

It seems that the situation of women in profession is becoming much better.

However, I found that gender discrimination, knowledge of the business, expectations of promotion, relationship with boss, different tastes in news, not enough training, unequal pay, more concern about family, traditional role patterns and sexual harassment are all the barriers for women to be happy with their job.

Are men more trustworthy?

According to “Female Leadership in US Newsrooms”, among all the participants in the survey 64% see their opportunity blocked identify management’s preference for the opposite sex — men — as standing in their way and men are more likely than women to claim knowledge of the business side of newspapers, and of libel and relevant legal issues.

The stories reserved for female journalists were soft ones which can be seen as an extension of their domestic responsibilities: in children and educational programmes; in consumer and domestic areas; in human interest and feature sections; in entertainment programmes, etc. In contrast, male journalists dominate in the hard news areas, such as international affairs, defence issues, national security and the like.

When something as serious as the 9/11 attacks occurs, women are not seen to have the necessary skills to investigate and report on them.

I do think it is a complicated question to answer as it is related to people’s deep-in-mind concept, men have more power while women are more vulnerable.

More than fair or unfair

Not every women is blocked by their counterpart, men.

Based on my research, many women don’t see their opportunity to be promoted and some just don’t want to.

One of the very important reasons is family, especially children.

Although nowadays women are not the machine to give a birth to a baby nor a slave to her husband any more, but they still be seen as the person who is entitled to have more responsibilities to nurture their family.

Some of them are even just willing to play the role like this.

My suggestion

So to me, how to reconcile the family and the job is still a cliché, men can get both family and well-paid job while women have to choose between them.

Referring to other solutions, I think offering special training to promote professional skills and gender issues is imperative. Setting up mechanism to put related law across, promoting rights and social protection of women, improving public daycare, i.e adjusting school hours for working parents.

Last but not the least, to women in profession, change yourself before change the rule is much more crucial.

 

When you pray, move your feet

30 Nov

I’m so excited to hear the news that the US government has designated an area of roughly twice the size of the United Kingdom in Alaska as critical habitats for the polar bear, which means those majestic species concerning many humans has got a new home.

I was not so concerned about environmental issues until I saw a movie called “An Inconvenient Truth” two years ago. It is a 2006 documentary film about global warming, directed by Davis Guggenheim, presented by former United States Vice President Al Gore, earning $49 million at the box office worldwide, the fourth-highest-grossing documentary film to date in the United States.

Everyone can find a thing that gave them power, a power to make a difference.

And this film is my thing.

It offers a passionate and inspirational look at Al Gore’s fervent crusade to halt global warming’s deadly progress in its tracks by exposing the myths and misconceptions that surround it, focusing on Al Gore and his travels in support of his efforts to educate the public about the severity of the climate crisis.

We can no longer afford to view global warming as a political issue – rather, it is the biggest moral challenges facing our global civilization. You know, some film critic called the film, “One of the most realistic documentaries I’ve ever seen”. So what we should think about? If the warming continues, we can expect catastrophic consequences. Droughts and wildfires will occur more often. More than a million species worldwide could be driven to extinction by 2050. The Arctic Ocean could be ice free in summer by 2050. So, there is no doubt we can solve this problem. In fact, we have a moral obligation to do so. Small changes to your daily routine can add up to big differences in helping to stop global warming.

Are you ready to change the way you live? Don’t let our children have occasion to ask us “what were our parents thinking? Why didn’t they wake up when they had a chance?”

We have to hear that question from them, now.

The climate crisis can be solved.

Here’s how to start.

“You can reduce your carbon emissions.

In fact, you can even reduce your carbon emissions to zero.

Buy energy efficient appliances + light bulbs.

Change your thermostat to reduce energy for heating + cooling.

Weatherize your house, increase insulation, get an energy audit.

Recycle.

If you can, buy a hybrid car.

When you can, walk or ride a bicycle.

Where you can, use light rail + mass transit.

Tell your parents not to ruin the world that you will live in.

if you are a parent, join with your children to save the world they will live in.

Switch to renewable sources of energy.

Call your power company to see if they offer green energy,

If they don’t, ask them why not.

Vote for leaders who pledge to solve this crisis, write to congress,

if they don’t listen, run for congress.

Plant trees, lots of tress.

Speak up in your community.

Call radio shows and write newspapers.

Join international efforts to stop global warming.

Reduce our dependence on foreign oil.

Help farmers grow alcohol fuels.

Raise fuel economy standards.

Require lower emissions from automobiles.

If you believe in prayer, pray that people will find the strength to change”

In the words of the old African proverb, “When you pray, move your feet”.

Should we stop pursuing gold medals?

28 Nov

199, the most gold medals won by China in the Asian Games has left all the other participating countries in the dust.

Every time, every sports event, the number of gold medals is the top priority for our country, wherever you go, newspapers, TV, radio and the web are buzz with the announcement that we are leading the top position in the medal ranking.

Undoubtedly, the amazing number of gold medals is a glamour for all the Chinese people, however, the question that whether the good performance in sports event can reflect the overall development of sports in a country and does it make us a physically fit nation has casted doubts among the public.

It is true that the West regarded China as “the sick man of East Asia” in the 19th and early 20th century, so we Chinese have been desperate to prove ourselves at international sport competitions to get rid of this racial slur.

But we have already proved the western countries wrong by winning more medals than any one of them at the Olympics. The Beijing Olympic Games was the crowning glory for China. I do think it is time to shift our focus from elite to popular sports which means taking the physical fitness of all the people as the purpose of sports.

To me, the spirit of the Games is to strengthen national citizens’ health and physical quality rather than calculating the number of gold medals which can only benefit who participate the games. To advocate “big sports & big health” concept is the real return of competitive sports.

What’s more, it is unfair to send professional athletes to compete with amateurs in a game. In China, those professional players are trained from childhood without school nurturing. Thus most of them are lack of time and energy to study.

I remembered one of the most famous Pingpang players said, no toys, no song, no friends, the only thing in her childhood is training.

Are they treated as the tool for a country to win medals? Do they still compete for the purpose of their dreams? Or for money? or just the reputation?

I do think the spirit the sports has been distorted.

The accelerated growth in the number of gold medals won by China at the Olympics and other big sports events proves that we are quite good at competitive sports. But it does not prove that we are good at sports at the mass level.

The government invested vast resources on elites, by comparison, some schools even do not own a playground nor PE classes.

There is no direct link between the number of gold medals and the national power. Instead of just for boosting China’s national spirit and sense of glory, the sports events are more about motivating people to engage in sports and physical activities national wide.

It is time to shed the extra baggage and let sports be itself.

China, the talk of the world

27 Nov

With the US looking to China to restrain North Korea in the latest flare-up in its conflict with South Korea this week, we can see China is playing a greater and greater role in global affairs.

The US is calling on China to let the currency rise against the dollar so that Chinese exports will become more expensive and imports to China cheaper. Europe — along with the US — want China to help out pressure on Iran over its nuclear programme.

Overtaking Japan to become the world’s second largest economy after the USA, the rising economic heft has made China more self-confident and the world looks to China to bear much more burden and be a crucial part in sorting out the world’s problems.

However, I don’t see ourselves as a superpower in terms of numerous challenges to overcome, such as uneven development, poorly developed democratic system which is different from western-style democracy, huge gap between the rich and the poor and the like.

We are still consumed by external aggression and internal conflict.

We would not let the US teach us to play by the rules set by the Western powers.

We have a long way to go.