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Overseas Chinese's participation in politics becomes irresistible trend

(People's Daily Online)

09:53, November 03, 2012

U.S. Representative for California's 32nd congressional district Zhao Meixin was recently appointed as the national campaign co-chairperson for Barack Obama's campaign committee, serving as the only Asian among a list of 35 co-chairpersons. This is another successful example of overseas Chinese participating in politics in foreign countries. In recent years, more and more Chinese participated in the political life of the country they settled and made noticeable achievements. Compared with other ethnic foreigners, overseas Chinese have distinct characteristics in political arena.

Overseas Chinese attracted much attention

As China's national strength is constantly enhancing, the status of overseas Chinese is also upgraded in countries they live in. In order to strengthen exchanges and cooperation with China, more and more overseas Chinese are needed to participate in the local political life. The overseas Chinese candidates drew much attention in competing with other ethnic candidates.

35-year-old Chinese South African Yi-Ju Christopher Wang had been elected the youngest congressman in the history of the country, which had caused a great stir in South Africa at the time. In addition to the advantages of "being a young Chinese South African and having a technical background," good education in Chinese culture is also important for him to win the election. Currently, Wang is preparing for the general election of South Africa in 2014 and he hoped to try his best to strengthen the exchanges and cooperation between Chinese community and other ethnic groups in South Africa in the future.

Awareness of political participation still needs to be enhanced

Overseas Chinese's participation in politics is an effective method to give a voice to the mainstream society and an important way to safeguard their legitimate rights and interests and express the requirements of Chinese community.

Harvard Shen, who is both an entrepreneur and a member of Liberal Party in Melbourne, Australia, participated in the election of local councilors in Melbourne in 2012. Overseas Chinese ought to be aware of their responsibilities and change the idea that they are excluded from the mainstream society and have nothing to do with the local political life through election campaign and participation in political life. In this way, it can not only increase their sense of pride and ownership but also enhance the overall image of overseas Chinese to integrate into the mainstream society.

Break through barriers and give a voice positively

Although overseas Chinese's participation in politics is an irresistible trend, the road is not smooth.

Taiwanese American female candidate Grace Meng from New York is expected to be elected the first Asian American congressperson in both New York and the eastern United States. Meng hoped to encourage more overseas Chinese to participate in politics to solve some practical problems such as the reunion of overseas Chinese with their families, and she also expressed her concern of no politicians of Chinese origin in the United States in the future.

Though overseas Chinese politicians have not yet had enough power to speak for Chinese community, more and more overseas Chinese are participating in politics and giving their voices. By virtue of the remarkable achievements they made in political field and their good image, the demands and status of overseas Chinese will gradually be recognized and respected by the mainstream society where they live.

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