Friday, November 25, 2005

 
Police State
On my way back to Shenzhen from Hong Kong tonight and gave C the obligatory phone call to say I was at the border and home soon. She was panicked and there was a lot of shouting and crashing in the background. Turns out the cops were there trying to bust her for being a woman living alone who shares an apt with a foreigner on weekends. Translated: a hooker. There are are perhaps hundreds of thousands women living alone in Shenzhen and very few are whores. Meanwhile there are about four low priced "chicken" operations fronting poorly as barbershops which have been operating freely for several months within three to six blocks of the local police station.
She managed to call a friend and momentarily deflect the cops and flee. On her way back here now to the apt where I am posting this.
I called an excoworker at the SZ Daily in the meantime for advice and possible aid. She told me that it was all okay and don't worry about it because it was "only" the police and not the security hbureau. "It's normal," she said.
I replied that a civilized country as China imagines itself to be doesn't try to arrest, question, hassle or detain women simply because they are living alone and have foreign boyfriend. She laughed nervously and told me again that everything will be all right.
I guess it depends on your definition of "all right."
I just wrote a letter of recommendation and edited an essay for this woman (who lives unmarried with a Chinese boyfriend) because she wants to get a master's degree in journalism from a Danish university. A lot of her essay was about how journalism uncovers "truth" which I thought was funny at the time cuz her idea of journalistic truth when I was working at the SZ Daily was only what she was permitted and preapproved to report.
It seems not much as changed.
Meanwhile, C just called. She's okay but shaken and coming back soon. Details to follow if they are worth it. Otherwise, everything is fine. Just fine. Remember, China has a 5,000 year old culture and we westerners don't so it's legit and civilized to try to shake down and arrest women who live alone and see foreigners on weekends.
It's times like these where all my feel good notions about China go out the door.
Comments:
Feel Good Notions? You were still clinging onto soma them, huh? Meh. Newbie.
 
I thought you told me to get out of America? I'm going to London soon, but politically, there's not a huge change there. Keep up the Free Blog revolution. You Chinese bloggers are making quite a row in the international press
 
Hey man, gonna fuck every weekend?
 
Not as often as you and your mother.
 
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