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Chinese Man Scavenges Through Trash For 16 Years To Buy Wife Piano



YANSHI - Xie Guizhi came onto the stage to a burst of applause at a community concert in Yanshi City. The 58-year-old sat at the piano and played a well-known folk song called The Waves of Hong Lake, a so-called red song of China’s Cultural Revolution Era, and her own youth.

In the audience sat Wu Zheng, her husband, his eyes slowly filling with tears, the China Times reported.

Watching his wife’s fingers move across the piano, Wu Zheng couldn’t help recalling the past. Like tens of millions of other young and educated people during the Cultural Revolution, Wu Zheng was sent as a teenager far away to Xinjiang, in Western China.

Later he would meet Xie Guizhi, a pretty girl 11 years his junior, according to the West China Urban Daily.

After the Cultural Revolution era, they were not permitted to return to Shanghai, Wu's hometown, as government policy did not admit any population from the countryside. They were obliged to go to live in Xie’s hometown, Yanshi City in Henan Province. He worked as a clerk in the Cooperative and his wife worked in a factory -- they had two kids.

Sixteen years ago when Xie Guizhi inadvertently revealed her wish of owning a piano, Wu Zheng secretly vowed to make it happen. Ever since, day after day, year after year, he scavenged odds and ends out of dumpsters and rubbish bins, gradually putting aside money to purchase the longed-for piano.

The 69-year-old Wu told West China Urban Daily: “I want her to be healthy and happy. I want to listen to her piano, and keep her company and grow old together.”

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The Colonial Spirit And "Soft Racism" Of White Savior Syndrome

Tracing back to Christian colonialism, which was supposed to somehow "civilize" and save the souls of native people, White Savior Syndrome lives on in modern times: from Mother Teresa to Princess Diana and the current First Lady of Colombia, Verónica Alcocer.

photo of a child patient holding hand of an adult

Good intentions are part of the formula

Ton Koene / Vwpics/ZUMA
Sher Herrera


CARTAGENA — The White Savior Syndrome is a social practice that exploits or economically, politically, symbolically takes advantage of individuals or communities they've racialized, perceiving them as in need of being saved and thus forever indebted and grateful to the white savior.

Although this racist phenomenon has gained more visibility and sparked public debate with the rise of social media, it is actually as old as European colonization itself. It's important to remember that one of Europe's main justifications for subjugating, pillaging and enslaving African and American territories was to bring "civilization and save their souls" through "missions."

Even today, many white supremacists hold onto these ideas. In other words, they believe that we still owe them something.

This white savior phenomenon is a legacy of Christian colonialism, and among its notable figures, we can highlight Saint Peter Claver, known as "the slave of the slaves," Bartolomé de Las Casas, Mother Teresa of Calcutta, Princess Diana herself, and even the First Lady of Colombia, Verónica Alcocer.

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