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JULY 8-12: NATIONWIDE PBS DELIVERY WEEK

Join our week of PBS deliveries happening all over the country! Join one of the scheduled deliveries or deliver to your local PBS station. Reach out to [email protected] to learn more. 

Scheduled deliveries: 

July 8th:

July 9th: 

July 12th:


PBS is censoring the documentary Voices from the Frontline: China’s War on Poverty. Read on to learn why this is so important and how you can take action.

About the film Voices from the Frontline: China’s War on Poverty

In 2019, PBS produced a documentary called Voices from the Frontline: China’s War on Poverty. They sent Dr. Robert Kuhn, an investment banker and trusted China expert, to document some of the methods China used to take 800 million people out of extreme poverty. He worked alongside Emmy award-winning director Peter Getzels.

The film crew journeyed across the country, held in-depth discussions with locals, and learned about China’s bottom-up poverty alleviation programs that were used to take the final 100 million people out of poverty. The film was a candid display of people-to-people dialogue, and provided an intimate look into China, a country unexplored and misunderstood by a majority of US citizens.


Why is PBS Censoring the film?

After PBS initially released the film, it was met with harsh criticism by anti-China politicians for making China “look too good.” They demanded PBS remove the documentary, and ultimately led to the censorship of the film after being shown only once. This is a politically charged action meant to quell any potential understanding or positive view of China. The US government and its media extensions has been working ceaselessly to grow fear and hatred of China, all in the name of building support for a potential future war.  


Why is this important?

Voices from the Frontline: China’s War on Poverty not only offers an insider look at successful localized poverty alleviation, but it allows a deeper, more insightful look into China, a country that has been widely demonized in the public eye. Censoring the documentary only serves those wanting to escalate divisions between the US and China. This is especially dangerous during a time in which Asian American hate crimes have been on the rise. 

By censoring Voices From the Frontline: China’s War on Poverty, they also deprive the public of the opportunity to learn about poverty alleviation policies that have changed millions of lives. Right now, amidst an increasingly dangerous climate crisis and high poverty rates, we need understanding and cooperation instead of censorship and fear.


TAKE ACTION NOW:

Deliver the petition to a local PBS station near you:

In June 2024, we delivered a petition of over 5,800 signatures calling for the liberation of the documentary to PBS National Headquarters in Virginia. The next step is delivering the petition to local PBS stations around the country.

 

 

 

Click here for a pdf of the petition. 

Delivery tips:

1. Call and email ahead of time. Ask if a representative will speak to you or accept the petition from you. If they say no, you should still go. Call again from the lobby. Make sure to tell them about the petition, why it's important, and how many signatures it has. 

2. Wear whatever you want (CODEPINK gear if you have it). 

3. When you hand over the petition, give a short summary what it's about. Here are some quick talking points: 

  • PBS funded a documentary called Voices From the Frontline: China's War on Poverty, and sent an investment banker to China to learn how they took over 800 million people out of poverty. 
  • After only showing it one time, PBS censored the film because politicians thought it made China "look too good."
  • We need all the resources we have to battle poverty around the world.
  • We need uncensored broadcasting from PBS, free of political bias. 
  • We need cooperation between the US and China to battle both global poverty and the climate crisis, which will only be accomplished if our media promotes truth and understanding. 

4. Take photos and videos and send them to [email protected] to be featured on our social media. 

Example:


Host a film screening:

Screen the documentary in your local community to raise public awareness of this important issue. 

Step 1: Choose a venue

Possible venues: 

  • Your home or someone else’s home.
  • A local church
  • A local coffee shop or cafe
  • Your public library  
  • A meeting room at a town office or municipal location
  • A public film venue, such as an independent theater or restaurant with film screening capability
  • Remotely on Zoom or another platform

Step 2: Reserve film equipment 

Many venues have reservable A/V equipment available. Otherwise, you’ll have to reserve it from an outside source. Make sure to confirm the reservation. 

Step 3: Choose a date and time 

Evenings generally work best for most people. 

Step 4: Keep an organized list of attendees 

You’ll want to develop a sign-up sheet to capture names, ZIP code, and email address for those that RSVP. Google forms is an easy and convenient platform for this. 

Step 5: Promote the event

CODEPINK has local chapters all over the country that can help you promote your event. You should also email [email protected] so we can add it to our CODEPINK event page and let our local chapters know about it.

Promotional actions include:

  • Posting about it on social media
  • Creating event flyers
  • Sending reminders to your RSVP list so they don’t forget

Step 6: Organize the screening

It’s a good idea to give a short introduction to the film before you show it to you and talk about why it’s being censored. Feel free to recite the information written above. 

It is also good to leave some time at the end for discussion. 

Possible discussion questions: 

  • What issues or questions came up for you during the film?
  • How does this film change your perception of China?
  • How do you feel knowing PBS chose to censor the film? 

Step 7: Take photos!

Be sure to take photos of your event and send images to [email protected]





Watch the documentary:

Email [email protected] to receive a link and password to the censored film. The clip available on Youtube is not the full PBS version. 


👉 Watch Jodie Evans' interviews with director Peter Getzels to learn more about the film and its censorship.   


Write to PBS staff and board members:

Example: 

Dear Name of board member,

I am writing in regard to PBS’s censorship of the documentary ‘Voices From the Frontline: China’s War on Poverty.’ This documentary was produced by PBS in 2019 alongside investment banker Robert Kuhn and award-winning director Peter Getzels. It explores the methods China used to get over 100 million people out of extreme poverty. After its release, PBS censored the film because it portrayed China too positively for our anti-China government officials. The continued censorship does nothing but add to fear and hatred of China and Chinese American citizens, which is especially dangerous when Asian American hate crime has been on the rise. It also hinders the public from learning about successful bottom-up poverty alleviation programs that the world desperately needs. I demand you stop censoring the film and be a voice for peace and cooperation.

Sincerely, 

Your name

Staff:

Board of Directors: 


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