"I will sign it," Greg Abbott, freshly re-elected Texas governor for the third time, tweeted on Monday. He was referring to a bill filed in the state legislature, which if passed will ban citizens, governments and entities from China, Iran, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea and Russia from purchasing land in Texas. Its mover, Republican state Senator Lois Kolkhorst, specifically said that "the past several years have seen more Texans alarmed by the increased acquisition of land by primarily Chinese interests".
Her admitting that she was against China makes one wonder where that hatred comes from. A local Texas media outlet, The Center Square, recently quoted a 2022 National Association of Realtors report as saying that Chinese investors accounted for 6 percent of foreign buyers who spent over $6 billion on US real estate between March 2021 and March 2022, with the top foreign buyers being from Canada and Mexico.
Chinese people around the world are benefiting local economies with their action. They open restaurants that provide jobs, grow vegetables that green the environment, and befriend locals by sharing their culinary skills. It is the US politicians' constant efforts to propagate the "China threat theory" that is driving a wedge between locals and Chinese people in the US, especially in Texas where they keep propagating the lie that "Chinese steal your jobs".
Those falling for such slogans need to know that such relentless demonizing of the Chinese will not only hurt ties with China, but also deal a blow to the local economy by curbing tourist inflow and trade.Therefore, it is not the Chinese, but their demonizing that steals jobs.
In 1882, the then US Congress passed the Chinese Exclusion Act and it was not until 2012 that the US House of Representatives passed a resolution expressing regret for such act. We hope that in 2023, Texas learns from 2012 to not repeat the mistakes of 1882.