Celebrities And Their Tibet Essay

1709 words - 7 pages

Celebrities and their Tibet

Tibet has long been a mystical land, a place that not many have known about. However this has changed. The celebrities have come out in force in making Tibet the center of attention. Even now, most people don't know more about Tibet than its location, somewhere in Asia. So, while the popular support of the struggle of the Tibetans has become well known due to the involvement of celebrities spreading the word, has it really helped the cause or simply let people know what is going on there? Even more importantly, is the information that the celebrities are passing on always correct?

Before any of these questions can be answered though, one must first know the origin of the conflicts between the two regions as well as the history of the Free Tibetan Movement. As said above, Tibet used to be a place that not many people knew about. This made it much easier for the Chinese government to come in and take control of the people and the land without much protest from the outside world. In fact even if other countries, like bordering India, had known, not much would have been done. This is because no nation had ever recognized Tibet as an independent country. Rather, it was the events that followed which caused the uproar. According to defected citizens of Tibet that traveled to India and then dispersed throughout the world, the Chinese started a form of spiritual cleansing. Monks and spiritual leaders that would not follow their ground rules were detained, captured or killed. The lama's of the Tibetan people were either taken as political prisoners or exiled. However, there are also those that said that some of this never happened.

"'The first troops had appeared in the city in September, 1951.' The soldiers fished in the rivers for food… 'They would not even take a needle from the people.' Soon after arriving, they opened the first primary school, and a hospital… They had done things that would 'directly benefit the common people. It was more change for the good in a shorter period of time than I had seen in my life'" (Ewing).

After all, China had only let them live in their own little world. At no time were they even supposed to have their own government. Why shouldn't the government be able to control their own land? Today, several families could live in the Appalachian Mountains for several generations under their own rule. If at any time the government found out about this and they refused to submit, the government would have to go in there to extract them. China just simply has a harsher way of dealing with it. After all, they condone capital punishment while, as a whole, the United States does not.

Meanwhile, due to China's actions the Free Tibet Campaign was founded. The formal form of the campaign did not start until after many celebrities had already jumped on the bandwagon in Tibet's support. It did not officially form until 1988. It was essentially just a committee, which sends out information for...

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