A recent official notice from southern China circulating online bans foreign festivals from local schools, sparking public concerns.
In a Dec. 20 notice, the Education Bureau of Rong’an county, Guangxi Province, requested local primary and secondary schools and kindergartens to prohibit any foreign festival celebrations on- and off-campus. The notice claimed to uphold the “spirit of the higher-level documents,” and all teachers and students, especially members of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) should follow it strictly, according to Lianhe Zaobao, a Singapore-based Chinese language media, on Dec. 24.
The official department warned that Western festivals like Christmas with strong religious overtones have been promoted by some Western countries to “implant Western values and lifestyles in China” through cultural communication and its “growing social influence seriously affects our country’s traditional culture.”
At the end of the notice, a local public security agency’s telephone number was left for reporting incidents.
On Dec. 21, China’s five departments including the Administration of Religious Affairs and Ministry of State Security, jointly issued regulations stating that any religious-related doctrine, knowledge, culture, and activities on the internet must first obtain official approval, otherwise it is considered a violation of regulations.
Boycotts of foreign holidays have become popular in many parts of China. Since November 2017, CCP leader Xi Jinping proposed in the Central United Front Work Conference that “we must be alert to the danger of religious infiltration.”
In December 2018, an elementary school in Si County, Anhui Province, conducted an educational program on the theme of resisting foreign festivals. The principal gave a speech titled “Christmas is a Disgrace to the Chinese People,” saying that Western festivals “bring a great disgrace to China,” according to Sina, a Chinese portal site, on Dec. 26, 2018.
In the same year, the Langfang municipal authority in Hebei Province asked law enforcement to completely ban Christmas trees, Santa Claus models, and other items placed along the streets, and clean up Christmas-related window stickers, banners, and lightboxes.
Meanwhile, the CCP regime doubled down on instilling the Party’s ideologies in various school subjects. On Dec. 18, the Grade 6 English exam administered by the Ministry of Education contained a Chinese to English translation question about the CCP’s developing history including: the CCP’s first conference, the red cradle of revolution, the red army, remembrance of revolutionary Martyrs, and so on.
Mr. Xue, who works as a Chinese to English translator in the United States, told Radio Free Asia that English is more than just a language, it carries the Anglo-American civilization, a culture that respects freedom and tradition. However, the Chinese authorities cut off the relationship between this culture and this language by inserting communist propaganda into the English exam.
“It is like a virus that has been implanted in English learning. Even if people learn this Western language, they still can not escape the clutches of the CCP brainwashing,” he said.