September 04, 2007
The Tibet Connection, and English-language radio show, airs the last Friday of each month from Los Angeles, but you can also stream it live at kpfk.org. You can listen to the most recent show (August 31, 2007, featuring Robert Thurman, among others) here. The next show will be September 28th at 2 pm Pacific time.
Banned Book Week is September 29-October 6, 2007. Learn more about it from the American Library Association.
Olympic News: Richard Gere calls for a boycott of the 2008 Beijing Olympics. Gere is quoted as saying the boycott is "probably impractical, but emotionally absolutely makes sense. Why should the world reward people who are obviously so bad to their own people, so bad to other people?" Elsewhere Gere speaks not about boycotting or attempting to isolate China, but rather to speak honestly about the People's Republic's human rights record. In yet another place Gere is quoted this way: "I don't call for a boycott, but a declaration of the truth. If China wants to be a host of the Olympics they also have to be open about what's going on in the country."
Indeed: China wants to be in the international spotlight with the Olympics, but the world may see more than China wants them to. Or China, so adpt at stage-managing its interactions with the West, may carry it off brilliantly and we'll all forget about the tainted dog food, lead paint in children's toys, the repression of Falun Gong, the occupation of Tibet, the saber-rattling at Taiwan, and generally bad behavior from a one-Party dictatorship that still exploits the worst of what free-market capitalism has to offer, slave labor. But is there a precedent for other Olympic hosts getting grilled over their behavior?
And a little more on China: some Tibetan nervousness over the coming reincarnation struggle. And Tibetan workers on China's railways and numerous construction projects around Tibet get paid less than Chinese workers. And China asks, Why can't Tibetans enjoy the wonders of modern civilization we are bringing to them?
A little bit of sensationalism: a Thai temple is criticized for making charms from the ashes of babies. There's a lot of anxiety about Thai charms and amulets. Some worry it's un-Buddhist. (Others wonder what un-Buddhist means. Maybe it means stealing a copper and bronze Buddha statue and selling it for scrap?)
- Philip Ryan, Webmaster