When China Matters got named in that “5 blogs that make me think” thingee, I didn’t do anything, mainly because the China blogs I read were all taken already.
However, I do have a list of non-Chinese blogs that make me think, mainly because they provide an inside look on places and people that I know very little about.
One of them is Sepia Mutiny, a blog for the Indian expat community.
It offers a vision of what a great group blog by Chinese writers and accessible to Western readers would look like—if the Chinese writers were Anglophone, informed, thoughtful, and good natured and not embroiled in the Taiwan vs. PRC, Communism vs. democracy, US vs. China, patriotism vs. human rights, spy vs. spy, troll vs. troll censored, monitored, and paranoid state of incipient flamewar that seems to hang over the China blogosphere like a dark cloud sometimes.
As an example of what I mean, look at the 100+ impassioned but reasoned and reasonably collegial comments taking on the incendiary issue, (I’m paraphrasing here) Was Gandhi an anti-semite...or just a dope?
I’m taking this opportunity to add Sepia Mutiny to my blogroll...
...and link to a eye-popping post about an incident on American Airlines where a vigilante passenger walked up behind a distinguished architect, Seth Stein, put him in a headlock, and rifled his belongings because Stein fitted his personal profile of a terrorist: he was brown (actually rich-guy tanned, not Arab-guy swarthy), had used the bathroom, and was carrying an iPod.
Reactions of other passengers and the airline add up to a feel-good story about how individual human decency flourishes even in an atmosphere of government-fostered paranoia—not!
Read the whole thing, Flying While Brown, even Jewish at Sepia Mutiny.