Tennessee Senator Marsha Blackburn is attempting to stop Chinese Communist Party efforts to push their agenda on American university campuses throughout Confucius Institutes, which suppress free speech and undermine transparency.
Congressional pressure had led to the shutdown of many Institutes, yet many are still open. Senator Blackburn is leading the effort to have existing Confucius Institutes in America comply with “standards of transparency and academic freedom.”
“The Chinese government has no right to influence American education the way Confucius Institutes have for the past sixteen years,” commented Senator Blackburn. “Those studying Chinese culture and language at schools like University of Memphis and Middle Tennessee State University ought to be alarmed that the Chinese government has made itself at home in their institutions.”
“Confucius Institutes as they currently operate are an affront to academic freedom, and we should not bow to repressive Chinese propaganda systems. It is time to put some serious distance between Confucius Institutes and American Universities,” Senator Blackburn commented.
Senator Blackburn introduced the Transparency for Confucius Institutes Act that mandates program participation agreements between Confucius Institutes and American institutions that feature them to tackle the various means China uses to exert disproportionate influence on campuses
Senators Josh Hawley, Tom Cotton, Rick Scott, James Lankford, Mike Lee and Marco Rubio have joined Blackburn in pushing this legislation.
According to Clarksville Online, this legislation creates the following institutions:
Clearly delineating between the Confucius Institutes’ programs and their own Chinese language programs;
Locating an Institute apart from Chinese language, history, and cultural programs;
Removing the Chinese assistant director position from Institutes;
Subjecting the staff and professors to appropriate background checks;
Making the agreements publicly available online;
Removing the confidentiality section of agreements;
Including stronger language in the agreements to make it clearer that the U.S. school has executive decision-making authority.
“We know the Chinese Communist Party is using Confucius Institutes as a way to create influence on our college campuses. This is the right step in making it clear that Confucius Institutes are not independent centers of learning, but instruments of Beijing’s overseas propaganda machine,” declared Senator Hawley.
“China funds Confucius Institutes on American college campuses to stifle criticism of atrocities like the Tiananmen Square Massacre and indoctrinate our kids with the party line,” remarked Senator Cotton. “Our bill would give American students, faculty, and administrators more power to resist the Confucius Institutes’ propaganda and pressure campaigns.”
“We know Communist China is stealing our technology and trying to compete with us on the global stage,” Senator Rick Scott commented. “The Transparency for Confucius Institutes Act will curb the negative influence of Confucius Institutes to protect our universities and our national security.”
“The Confucius Institutes are directly funded and overseen by the Communist Party of China (CPC), whose suppression of human rights and malign activities around the world warrant a strong response from the US,” stated Senator Lankford. “The fact that they are invited onto numerous college campuses around the US is concerning and should be addressed. This bill takes steps to ensure China is not promoting propaganda or political censorship on campuses under the guise of the seemingly innocuous Confucius Institutes. The bill also ensures China cannot unduly influence and pressure decisions at our universities because of the presence of a Confucius Institute. The US wants a constructive relationship with China, but the lack of transparency around Confucius Institutes inhibits our ability to do that.”
“No foreign government should have the ability to pressure U.S. institutions of higher education to change their curriculum or suppress politically sensitive content. At many schools, Confucius Institutes have acted as extensions of the Chinese Communist Party,” declared Senator Lee. “The U.S. federal government has a duty to conduct careful oversight of foreign programs to protect our students from undue influence or foreign propaganda. These measures ensure that the agreements that our colleges and universities enter into are transparent both to the government and to the American people.”
“For far too long, the Communist Chinese government has attempted to infiltrate American universities through the disguise of the government-run Confucius Institute,” Senator Rubio noted. “I’ve repeatedly raised concerns and educated universities, including those throughout Florida, that have had these agreements in place. This bill adds needed pressure on Confucius Institutes, and pushes universities to take responsibility in a way that’s consistent with American and democratic values.”
Chinese officials have recently exerted pressure on faculty at U.S. universities that host Confucius Institutes to avoid making declarations or celebrating events on politically sensitive matters. Chinese teachers at these institutes enter contracts with the Government of China where they promise to not get in the way of national interests. These limitations on free speech reflect a form of soft power that China uses to move its national interests at the detriment of America.
The Department of Homeland Security Has Plans to Undermine Immigration Enforcement
The Biden administration is working towards a de facto abolition of ICE.
Are Democrats going to appease their radical base by abolishing ICE?
Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas is now putting forward a plan to restructure the federal deportation agency in a way that effectively guts its traditional role of arresting and deporting criminal aliens in the country.
According to a Washington Times report by Stephen Dinan, Mayorkas revealed the idea last week in a telephone meeting with ICE personnel in Texas. In this call, Mayorkas proposed taking 4,000 members of ICE off the streets and transitioning them into roles of criminal investigators.
As a result of this proposed change, ICE agents would no longer be working to enforce laws against aliens illegally residing in the U.S. This entails reducing arrests and deportations.
A number of deportation officers said this move was similar to a major city police department shifting its beat cops into detective roles. As a result of this change, no one would be left to patrol the streets for lesser crimes.
“This is an administrative abolishment of ICE as we currently know it,” an ICE source told The Washington Times.
After the phone call, there were still many questions regarding Mayorkas’ intentions with ICE. Questions about what new training ICE agents would have to go through and the pay structure they would be subject to were not addressed.
According to The Washington Times, Mayorkas was of the opinion that ICE officers were in the wrong pay system. Mayorkas allegedly said that deportation officers are in the wrong pay scale but did suggest the idea of a pay raise.
Under the current federal government job system, deportation officers are categorized as GS-1801 jobs and usually fall under GS-12 pay scale. Criminal investigators hold GS-1811 jobs and fall under the GS-13 pay scale.
Mayorkas’ ploy is to use the promotion offers as a way to get ICE agents on board with his plan to gut deportation enforcement plans.
However, one source revealed that many officers feared that they were being forced out of their original jobs.
“It’s all spin,” the source declared. “We’re not going to abolish ICE, but we really are going to abolish ICE as you know it.”
The abolition of ICE is one of the chief slogans for the multicultural Left in recent years, which is committed to importing destabilization levels of migrants.
How ICE’s abolition would look is “tougher to pin down” as Dinan outlined.
They usually aren’t talking about investigating smugglers, street gangs or child pornographers. Homeland Security Investigations, with its 7,000-strong force of GS-1811 criminal investigators, perform those duties.
So far, the “Abolish ICE” crowd is in opposition to the Enforcement and Removal Operations, which is generally tasked with arrests, detention, and deportation of people illegally in the country.
Dinan listed off where the majority of these arrests came from:
Most of those arrests come from deportation officers picking up people who end up in local prisons or jails. But some fraction are at-large arrests in the community — particularly in areas where state and local sanctuary policies block access to prisons or jails.
The administrative tweaks Mayorkas is implementing are indeed a way to defang ICE in a subtle manner. A traditional legislative effort would likely cause massive backlash from voters who would likely take their anger out on politicians at the polls in 2022.
Border security is crucial in maintaining a stable polity. Republicans who have any iota of nationalism in their bones would take this issue and run with it.
Immigration still remains an issue that resonates well with the grassroots.
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