From Qiangguo Forum via Yulun Jiandu, translated by CDT:
Some recent articles from the press are good food for thought: the secretary of state of some country (must be U.S. huh?) was booed during speaking at a university; a local election turned into a group fighting. On the surface, these events were scoffed at for anarchy and disorder. But when we associate them with our reality, we feel puzzled: are they chaotic, or are we missing something?
Chinese, especially underclass Chinese, usually have the “virtuous tradition” of “dare get mad but not speak up (Êï¢ÊÄí‰∏çÊï¢Ë®Ä).” Under bullying of superiors or those with higher status, one can only stare with anger but say nothing, arguing that this is the best way to protect oneself. Even though there are a handful who are bold enough to be both angry and talkative, the result must be a round of retaliations or contempt, earning the title of “idiots.” Or, at the most, we can speak in private, if not in front of the bosses.
So we often raise up hands after leaders speak, sing praises to opinions of officials. If the leader is correct, we firmly uphold his decision; if he/she is wrong, we agree no less. Done right, we all share the credit; if done wrong, we split the responsibility and unload the worries for the leader, hoping that he/she will have a good impression on you for future promotions.
Foreigners, however, are not like this. Even our self-claimed profound, long civilization has its shortcomings compared with the West. Foreigners dare to speak up but are never angry (Êï¢Ë®ÄÂç¥Ê≤°ÊúâÊÄí). If the superior is wrong, he/she will point it out, because they think making mistakes is normal and pointing it out is no hurting someone’s face. If the boss is right, they will warmly applaud, but this is not kissing the ass, but a heart-felt assertion. Thus incidents where the president was harshly criticized by the press, high officials speechless confronted by public questioning.
Dare to be angry but not speak up, is middle-wayism, but the result being endless mistakes and many more twists on the road, evidenced by history. To speak up without having to be mad, is an audacity and enlightenment, and also a sense of responsibility over work. Hope our society has more who are bold to speak up, less those who often get angry, only get angry. [Full Text in Chinese]