Dear Dr. Freedenberg: Being in a position where my livelihood and my career aspirations are based on the success or failure of American manufacturing, I can see your view and even empathize with the fears of the effects of the "China Catch-All" regulations. However, sir, I have to disagree that this "Catch-All" is not well warranted. I think that as manufacturers and people who's livelihood stems from it, it is extremely hard for us to overlook the possibility of extra earnings, better profits, and improving the trade deficit. But, as responsible citizens, we must consider at what cost.
Consider China politically. China has a long history of passive aggression — not decades, but centuries. The slaughter at Tiananmen Square did not happen 50 years ago; it occurred just barely over a decade ago. China has made Internet "free speech" a thing of the past by threatening to shut down any sites that do not regulate themselves to China's extremely strict anti-free speech laws. They have begun doing mass sweeps for Chinese journalists that attempt to report issues and occurrences in any way not preapproved by the government. China also has "death mobiles" — mobile death sentence chambers — that go from town to town administering capital punishments to offenders. The records from these "death mobiles" are, at best, spotty, and no one is really sure how many people have been put to death by injection in these vehicles. Even China is less than forthcoming with any numbers or offenses, other than to say it has been effective, efficient and inexpensive in comparison with alternatives.
As Americans, we can no longer say that it is not our problem. We cannot have the golden egg without facing the giant ogre. It is necessary for us to weigh our financial interests with our foreign conduct. China and its atrocities may be hidden from our eyes in the blue abyss of the Pacific Ocean, and even when we visit, the atrocities may be well hidden from the European/Westerner quarters of the major cities that we come into contact with. The almighty dollar may feed my children, but I strongly desire a world for them to grow up in. It is, at best, naive to, at worst, purely greedy for us to not have concern that we may be building up the military of a potential threat.
Sincerely, Alexandra Engle Process Engineer,
Desert Storm Veteran and Mother