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A Republican US Senate nominee is coming under sharp criticism for accusing the hundreds of thousands of Chinese students in the US of stealing American intellectual property and saying they should be banned from studying “hard sciences.”
Bryant “Corky” Messner, a Trump-endorsed candidate in New Hampshire, previously referred to the US-China trade tensions and has taken aim at Chinese students, who he broadly alleged were agents of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP); and that they were receiving a US education only to return to China on behalf of the government.
Messner is up against Democratic incumbent Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, who was previously elected for two terms. The Senate election in New Hampshire will be held on November 3.
“I think one of the things we ought to do … is say to the students, those students, ‘You’re welcome to study here, but you must study economics, the American constitution, freedom,'” Messner said during the GOP meeting in July, according to video footage obtained by Insider. “Not study the hard sciences, computer science, physics, chemistry, and not give them that kind of education. Let’s educate them in freedom and individual liberty.
“They’re exerting their influence throughout the world and it is time for us to be serious about the Chinese Communist Party. Yes, sir,” Messner said, adding that the US had unwittingly become “the research and development arm” for China.
In a separate controversial recording, Messner also suggested outright banning students from China.
“We also have to, I think, not allow Chinese students to attend American universities, because they come here and they become educated, and they go back with our intellectual property,” Messner said in May, according to HuffPost.
A student-run organization from Dartmouth College in New Hampshire said in a statement to Insider it was “deeply disheartened” by Messner’s remarks.
“We wholeheartedly believe that banning a targeted group of students from studying certain subjects is blatant discrimination,” the Dartmouth Chinese Culture Society said. “Education in the hard sciences is not a private good restricted for particular ethnicities or nationalities. Rather, it should be open for everyone to pursue.”
“While we acknowledge that learning about American values is important, we disagree with Mr. Messner’s statement that Chinese students can only study economics, the American Constitution, and freedom,” the organization added. “Politicizing the hard sciences not only undermines students’ individual interests and passions, but also interferes with the development of scientific research for the well-being of everyone.”
‘That’s just not how human beings work’
Five Chinese and Chinese-American students majoring in different fields at New Hampshire universities criticized Messner’s comments, telling Insider his rhetoric is concerning. All of the students spoke anonymously citing privacy concerns and the potential for retribution from their universities or the CCP.
“I don’t think education and knowledge should be kept on guard or seen as private where only certain people are allowed to have access while other people are not,” a native Chinese student told Insider. “People come to American colleges to learn, to study, and further their knowledge.”
The student, a computer science major, explained …read more
Source:: Business Insider