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Student unions at several Chinese colleges under fire for bureaucracy [Copy link] 中文

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Post time 2018-10-9 09:47:07 |Display all floors

(CGTN) Student unions at 41 of China's universities, including the prestigious Tsinghua University and Peking University, issued an announcement calling for student association leaders to end practices of "bureaucratic behaviors" and its "culture of hazing," wrote the Communist Youth League of China Monday on Weibo, a Twitter-like social media platform in China.

"Leaders at student associations should not seek [their] personal interests. We also oppose extravagance," the statement said.

The move is in response to heated online discussion after a student was admonished by a student union's vice president in a group chat.

Screenshots of the group chat emerged online last week, showing conversation among members of a student union at Chengdu Aeronautic Polytechnic, a college in southwest China's Sichuan Province.

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Post time 2018-10-9 09:47:50 |Display all floors

The screenshot of the group chat of the student association has stirred a heated discussion on social media in China then.

In the screenshot, a freshman tagged the vice president of the association, surnamed Yang, and called him "Xuezhang," (upper classman in English) when asking about the time of a meeting.

"How dare you tag President Yang? And you even call him Xuezhang directly," a group manager surnamed Yuan said in the group chat, asking, "do you know what you are doing?"

Later on, another manager in the chat group, surnamed Liu, sent another message to the entire group.

"To all junior members, please understand your position and be careful of the way you speak to your leader," Liu told the group.

According to The Beijing News, the student who posted the initial message is a freshman who just joined the association last month.

Others, including netizens and some media outlets, lamented that student associations in China had become increasingly "bureaucratized."

Referring to the issue, Xinhua News Agency released an editorial opinion, criticizing the behavior of the student union.

"Positions at students unions are often linked with their postgraduate success and thus some people try their ways to gain higher places in hierarchy," the article said.

One day later, Chengdu Aeronautic Polytechnic responded and confirmed the behavior of the students.

"They have reflected and promised to rectify their behavior," the school said in its statement.

The screenshot resonated with Chinese netizens on social media, especially among people who had similar experiences with university student unions.

This is not the first time that complaints were lodged against student leaders for bureaucratic, bad behavior at college student associations.

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Post time 2018-10-9 09:48:13 |Display all floors

A member of the association in another university alleged he/she was once required to write down the name of the president over 50 times and apologize publicly as a punishment for the endearment to the student leader in a Mid-Autumn Festival text message./Screenshot from Weibo

In September, a member of the association at another university once reported being required to write down the association president's name for 50 times and apologize publicly as a punishment for the endearment to the student leader in a Mid-Autumn Festival text message.

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Post time 2018-10-9 21:28:27 |Display all floors
This post was edited by Jaaja at 2018-10-9 23:05

In my country there is a saying that translates roughly as "what the big ones do first, the little ones will follow".

All this mirrors overall bureaucracy and remnants of confucian "virtues" in Chinese society, just like children playing with toy cars in a sandpit mirror adults with bigger toys.

There is another saying that goes "you reap what you sow", which seemingly all too often applies to youth and their parents in China - not that it's unheard elsewhere.

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