Last week the University of Delaware announced its plan to terminate its ten-year relationship with the Confucius Institute, a cultural promotion organization connected to the Chinese government.
The University of Delaware is following in the footsteps of 20 other American universities who are breaking ties with the Chinese organization.
According to a student newspaper report, the University of Delaware announced its plan last week to end its partnership with the Confucius Institute in 2020. This institute has been accused of paying off American colleges in order to promote a pro-Beijing bias on college campuses across the country.
Although there are concerns about the shutdown of the University of Delaware’s Confucius Institute, Associate Deputy Provost Ravi Ammigan believes that the Institute’s closure will not decrease resources for international students or students wanting to study abroad.
“I don’t believe the UDCI situation will decrease service to international students,” Ammigan stated. “OISS ranks 19th globally for international students. I think that’s very telling.”
Several elected officials such as Senator Josh Hawley have called for a federal investigation of the Confucius Institute. The Missouri Senator sent a letter to university leaders in Missouri arguing that the Chinese government is using the Confucius Institute to clamp down on speech on American campuses.
In his letter, Hawley stated the following:
But Confucius Institutes are more than a means of cultural exchange. As Li Changchun, a senior member of the Chinese Communist Party, stated in 2009, the Confucius Institutes are ‘an important part of China’s overseas propaganda set-up.’ Hanban is governed by the leaders of twelve Chinese ministries, including those handling foreign affairs, state media, and propaganda. Partnering universities sign contracts that prohibit them from ‘tarnishing the reputation’ of Hanban, and Hanban sends teachers and textbooks from China that are designed to promote a positive image of the PRC and suppress any discussion of the ‘three Ts’: Tibet, Taiwan, and Tiananmen Square. These Confucius Institutes are, in short, a tool for China to spread influence and exercise soft power in its rivalry with the United States.
China has come under increased scrutiny since drama between the NBA’s relationship with China has surfaced. Although China has made economic reforms that have slightly deviated from its totalitarian past, the country remains authoritarian and adversarial to American interests in many regards.
The presence of organizations like the Confucius Institute are ways that Beijing uses soft power to undermine the U.S. and advance pro-Chinese narratives abroad.
Rival Candidate Spreads Fake News Attacks Against Anti-Lockdown Hero Shelley Luther
Shelley Luther, the candidate for Texas’ Senate District 30, is beginning to face heat from her rivals in the Senate seat’s special election.
One of her opponents, Drew Springer, the State Representative for Texas’s 68th District, called her out for supposed hypocrisy on the Wuhan virus lockdowns.
On Facebook he commented, “Shelley Luther sang a different tune about forced COVID-19 shutdowns before she realized she could use it for her political benefit.
While she thought her record could be deleted from Facebook, there was only so long she could hide. #ShutdownShelley”
Springer referred to a comment Luther made on March 16 where she said “Just my opinion. If some major cities are closing down building where large gatherings occur, then EVERY city should. The problem will not fix if some people are out and about.”
However, several users commenting on Springer’s Facebook post were quick to point out some nuances in Luther’s comments.
The main gist of their comments was that Luther said that it didn’t make any sense for a few venues to remain open and others not be closed. In essence, she was calling for policy consistency, not for selective enforcement of lockdowns.
Luther made a name for herself earlier this year when she resisted the city of Dallas’ shutdown order and continued operating her business in defiance of this ordinance.
She would later face jail time for her refusal to comply but would later be pardoned by Texas Governor Greg Abbott.
Luther has received endorsements from organizations such as Texas Gun Rights PAC for her staunch liberty activism and commitment to American principles such as the Second Amendment.
The Dallas salon owner is one of the more high-profile state level candidates running for office and has become a national figure of resistance against the Wuhan virus lockdowns.
A Luther victory would represent a major win for Texas conservatives who have been disappointed with the legislative body’s performance over the years.
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