Dragon Boat Festival used for anti-religious propaganda
In Guangzhou, the elderly were “helped” to celebrate the festival and told not to waste their pension money on illegal religion, xie jiao or superstition.
by Guo Guo
At the Dragon Boat Festival, which takes place on June 3, many Chinese people watch dragon boat races and prepare and eat sticky rice dumplings called zongzi. Travelers to Guangzhou, formerly known as Canton, in pre-revolutionary China, marveled at the spectacular dragon boat festivals held there, and even today the festival is a grand event. Elderly people in particular love the dragon boat festival and zongzi.
For the Chinese Communist Party, there are two categories of holidays: those whose celebration is discouraged, including Christmas, and those which are accepted as part of traditional Chinese culture, but transformed into an opportunity for propaganda.
In the Guangzhou area, the 2022 Dragon Boat Festival included a campaign targeting the elderly and warning them against illegal religion, xie jiao and superstition. The theme was “protect your pension money,” which some seniors, according to the CCP, squander on donating to temples or religious organizations, engaging in superstitional practices or, even worse, donating to movements. banned like xie jiao.
In Dagang Community, which is part of Nansha District of Guangzhou City, an eyewitness told Bitter Winter how the Dragon Boat Festival propaganda campaign unfolded. Old people were brought together and taught to “keep their pension money”. There was some sound advice about fraud being perpetrated on the elderly and illegal drugs becoming a problem for them too, but soon the lecture turned to the evil of illegal religion, xie jiao, and “psychic” practices. and superstitious, all activities in which the elderly citizens may waste their money.
To show that the CCP allows traditional Chinese medicine, not to be confused with “superstition”, the elderly were allowed to fill the incense sachets carried on the boat festival with herbs. dragons. Time was also spent preparing and eating zongzi.
In the end, the elderly were encouraged to promise that they would stay away from xie jiao, superstition, illegal religion, drugs and other “evil” activities, and received leaflets to study at home.