Chinese and Westerners share more common values than they realize
Published: Dec 19, 2020 02:06 PM

File Photo: VCG

In the article I wrote last week, I mentioned that there are no serious conflicts over values between China and the West. The two sides share comprehensive common values, including democracy, freedom and rule of law.

They indeed have ideological conflicts, which are actually a reflection of their different self-interests.

Many people may disagree with my opinions. But I would reiterate that the mainstream values of China and the West have more in common than in dispute.

Some people in the US and the West are determined to portray problems between China and the US as antagonism between different sets of values.

So, we must be careful of such traps in the narrative and avoid pushing the two countries toward confrontations over values. 

Democracy, freedom and rule of law are all part of China’s socialist core values, and what Chinese people believe in.

China and the West may have different priorities in upholding these values, but the differences should by no means be an antagonism between the two sides.

People like US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo aim to attach extreme definitions to the differences so as to demonize China within the Western world. We must not let them have their way.

Emphasizing common values between China and the West is not part of some strategy; Instead, it is about seeking truth from facts. Chinese and Westerners don’t disagree with each other very much about what is good and what is bad in their daily life.

It is the same if we take a look at this issue from a society-level view. Different political systems and disputes over national interests have led to ideological conflicts, which are totally different from an ideological hostility.

Both Chinese and Western societies love peace. All people want to live better lives and support order and cherish freedom.

All countries need to further develop, though their ways to achieve these goals may vary. We don’t need to be worried about some Westerners’ attempts to mislead people. With gradual communication with China, these people will seriously contemplate the radical mentality of Western political elites. 

Facts are the most telling argument. By doing our own business well, developing our country well, bettering people’s livelihood and benefitting people with expanded human rights efforts, China's words will eventually resonate with the world.

We shouldn’t push ourselves to be “left” because of the struggle with extreme forces in the US – we don’t have to respond to all their moves. Having willpower means to impartially hold our ground and stick to our due direction. This is my advice for people of goodwill.

The author is editor-in-chief of the Global Times. opinion@globaltimes.com.cn