Skip to content

Fightback in Muscatine, Iowa Against State Rep Seeking To Prevent School Trips to China

Source: Defense Visual Information Distribution Service

Iowa State Rep. Taylor Collins (R-Dist. 95) is on a crusade to stop Muscatine High School students and staff from visiting China, implying they risk getting brainwashed. He wants an upcoming exchange trip to be canceled. Collins is typical of too many know-nothing, NATO-narrative lawmakers around the U.S. He told KWQC, for an article posted May 21, “The Chinese have an agenda, and they are pushing their influence throughout the world. At this point, their relationship has deteriorated to an extent that I don’t believe we should be treating them as our friends. They are in disarray. Clearly, we should not be treating them with kid gloves … they need to pause any future programming on this issue.”

Muscatine is where President Xi Jinping visited and toured Iowa agriculture in 1985, long before becoming President, and returned for visits twice since to see friends. Muscatine has a sister city in China, and active exchange programs, including hosting Chinese orchestras in Iowa. Former Muscatine Mayor Dwayne Hopkins, who hosted President Xi in his town, has defended the value of friendships in China, which is the third largest importer of Iowa’s agriculture exports. At a Schiller Institute conference, Mayor Hopkins called it common sense and common decency.

Muscatine resident Sarah Lande, who hosted President Xi in her home in 2012, provided a written riposte to Rep. Collins for KWQC. Lande wrote a book, Old Friends, about Xi Jinping’s time in Iowa, for which Xi wrote the foreword. Lande told KWQC: “I am proud of the Muscatine School District for supporting and participating in these school exchanges with China. President Xi Jinping announced in San Francisco he would bring 50,000 students and educators from the U.S. to China in the next five years. I, students and faculty at Muscatine High School acknowledge these educational exchanges supported by the Chinese government are part of China’s soft power promoting their country along with friendship and understanding. The Chinese government funds their priorities…. [In Muscatine, we the people fund reciprocal exchanges.] Should our students and educators take part in this opportunity with their eyes open? Yes! These exchanges have brought life-changing experiences to students…. Knowledge is freedom to make wise decisions. These are the values upon which America was founded…. I believe wise, educated youth, experiencing the world through travel and friendships will be wise leaders in today’s internationally connected world and earth. We all are in it together. Let us prepare our youth through education, experience and trust to be wise and discerning future leaders of America and the world.”