READ THIS - Mitch Albom has an article reflecting on things he observed in China during the Summer Olympics that is well worth your time today. He was there reporting for Freep.com.
Here's the link to his article: What did we learn as flame flickers?
Here's a couple of salient quotes.
You can shop in this country. You can drive in this country. You can dance and sing and make a fortune in this country. Yet you can't have multiple children and you can't pray where you wish and you can't say anything you please.
On so many levels, in so many places, Beijing looks so much like the United States -- shopping malls, Starbucks, traffic, big buildings -- that you can forget the state runs everything in China. That the Chinese don't hold elections. That there are indeed people in jail for simply expressing their point of view. I tried, in vain, during my time here, to speak to a friend of a friend who was under house arrest for daring to film a documentary about religion in China. He kept balking at an interview because, his friend told me, his phone was tapped and he might suffer penalties simply for a conversation, even off the record.
Still, when you think America was founded on the idea of religious freedom, that the pursuit of happiness is written into our Constitution, and that we hold majority-rules elections, you realize a place where you don't vote, you can't easily pray, and your happiness -- if it involves family -- is capped, well, that's as different as it can be.
Check out the full read. I think you'll learn something.
The Great Separation continues.