xi's moments
Home | From the Readers

Defending the honor of the PLA

By Wu Guangqiang | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2023-05-17 15:00

Staff members from the Shanghai media company await customers at a pop-up store in a shopping mall in the city. Photo provided to CHINA DAILY

On May 13, Li Houshi, a stand-up comedian from Xiaoguo Culture, a Shanghai-based comedy company,  who goes by the stage name "House," likened the behavior of two stray dogs he’d adopted to one of the PLA's slogan, which caused public anger and condemnation. As a result, the Beijing Cultural Law Enforcement Agency has launched an investigation into the company.

Xiaoguo Culture issued a statement on May 15 via their official Weibo account, announcing an indefinite suspension of all of Li's performances. The company apologized sincerely to the public for Li's inappropriate metaphor that caused controversy among the audience. Li himself has publicly apologized on Weibo, expressing profound regret for his inappropriate metaphor during the performance. He has taken full responsibility for his actions, ceased all performing activities, and has committed to deep reflection.

"Jun Zhengping" at The PLA News and Communication Center stated in a Weibo post that low-brow humor, unrestrained indulgence, sensational entertainment, and insatiable desires are all detrimental to literature and art, providing no advantages. The People's Daily also commented on the matter, urging caution and balance. It emphasized the need to avoid crossing the line in the pursuit of laughter and to prioritize industry-wide consensus and prudence.

Li Houshi should be aware of the seriousness of his mistake, as his behavior has already violated the law. On June 10, 2021, the 29th meeting of the Standing Committee of the 13th National People's Congress passed the "Law on the Protection of the Status and Rights and Interests of Military Personnel of the People's Republic of China", which clearly protects the honor and reputation of military personnel under the law. Among them, Article 32 of Chapter 3 stipulates that military personnel shall enjoy the honor they have earned for their entire life, and no organization or individual shall defame or denigrate their honor, or insult or slander their reputation in any way.

Protecting the honor and rights of soldiers through law is not unique to China, as the United States also has similar laws that prohibit insulting or mocking the military or military personnel. The most famous of these is the federal law "Uniform Code of Military Justice" (UCMJ), which sets out the behavior standards and discipline that military personnel must follow, including the prohibition of insulting or mocking the military or military personnel. California has its state law, the "Anti-Ridicule Law", aimed to protect the dignity and honor of military personnel and ensure that they receive the respect they deserve.

Some people may think that Li's actions were just a performance, at most an unintentional mistake, and that there is no need to make a big deal out of it or to punish him legally. This is a display of ignorance.

PLA is the armed forces of the People's Republic of China, which is responsible for defending the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the country. The military personnel of PLA are trained to protect the country and its citizens from internal and external threats. Therefore, showing disrespect towards the military personnel is equivalent to showing disrespect towards the country and its security.

Respecting military personnel is an essential part of the social contract between the citizens and the state. The military personnel risk their lives to protect the citizens and the country and, in return, they deserve respect and recognition for their sacrifices. Therefore, insulting military personnel must be forbidden to maintain the integrity and security of the country.

If Li sincerely realizes his mistake and is willing to accept necessary punishment, promising not to repeat the same mistake in the future, he should be given a second chance. He can serve as an example, constantly reminding people not to try to tarnish the glorious image of the People's Liberation Army.

The author is a Shenzhen-based English tutor. 

The opinions expressed here are those of the writer and do not necessarily represent the views of China Daily and China Daily website.

If you have a specific expertise, or would like to share your thought about our stories, then send us your writings at opinion@chinadaily.com.cn, and comment@chinadaily.com.cn.

Global Edition
Copyright 1995 - . All rights reserved. The content (including but not limited to text, photo, multimedia information, etc) published in this site belongs to China Daily Information Co (CDIC). Without written authorization from CDIC, such content shall not be republished or used in any form. Note: Browsers with 1024*768 or higher resolution are suggested for this site.
License for publishing multimedia online 0108263

Registration Number: 130349