Roughly nine million Chinese high school students take the National College Entrance Examination (i.e. the “Gaokao”) each year — and the extreme pressure it puts on young students almost always results in a handful of suicides.
Needless to say, the Gaokao is a big deal in China. In fact, the Chinese take such an interest in the annual event that test results are often leaked to the public (this would explain the stress).
But here’s something: “One teenager, however, obviously didn’t care about his grade. In an essay on justice — or more accurately, ‘sense of balance’ — the teen wrote that he/she expected a zero,” Business Insider’s Mamta Badkar writes.
And the teen didn’t hold anything back (which is pretty impressive considering he must have known his “0-point” grade would be made public).
“With China’s intolerance for dissent however one has to wonder if the grader was too scared to give the teen a higher score,” Badkar adds.
Here a portion of the student’s essay that has been translated into English by ChinaSMACK.com:
Justice? I’ve always wanted to live a just life; in a society where everyone’s equal, where the law reigns supreme, where the city management don’t beat the rabble, where school principals don’t check into hotel rooms with their students, where doctors focus on treating their patients. But I was born into this society, breathing highly polluted air, eating food that could kill you at any time, watching the director of some state tobacco bureau accumulating millions. I want to ask, do you see justice? Do you believe the Chinese Dream will ever be realized? It doesn’t matter if you believe it or not, either way I believe it.
When over ten thousand pigs collectively jumped into the Huangpu River, I realized that if I don’t believe in this “justice,” I’ll end up just like them. I’ve been waiting to live a “just” life, where the government officials are honest and do real work, where the businessmen run their businesses conscientiously, where the housing prices are not so ridiculously high, and where the people live in happiness and contentment.
There’s only a few minutes left before I have to turn in my test paper, and I already know my essay has pricked the test grader’s tiny little heart. Give me a zero then, my dear grader. I’m not scared, Sanlu milk powder didn’t kill me, so what more could a zero grade do? Don’t hesitate; scrawl down the grade, and then you can go play mahjong…
Click here to read the full essay.
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(H/T: BI). Featured image Getty Images.