Why is the Chinese Communist Party Afraid of a Beauty Queen?

Beauty with a purpose: Anastasia Lin was crowned Miss World Canada 2015, but was not allowed to go the world final in China. (Image: Courtesy of Anastasia Lin)
Beauty with a purpose: Anastasia Lin was crowned Miss World Canada 2015, but was not allowed to go the world final in China. (Image: Courtesy of Anastasia Lin)

Chinese born Anastasia Lin was awarded third place in the 2013 Miss World Canada beauty pageant. This year, the 25-year-old Canadian citizen went on to win that very title, but it appears she’s being blocked from attending the 65th annual Miss World competition that’s to be held in China on December 19.

For reasons why Lin is being shut out of the event, we can initially refer back to an email that was sent to the national pageant’s organizers in 2013 that urged them to “seriously reconsider her candidacy,” reported The Daily Beast.

The email said that Lin had “only entered this contest so that she can attack the Chinese government.” It went on in a similar vein and finished with a threat: “Don’t be surprised if your sponsors start pulling out due to an insulted Chinese government.”

The Daily Beast said the national organizers forwarded on the email to Lin and left it at that.

The issue is that Anastasia Lin advocates for human rights in the country of her birth, and it’s a large part of her Miss World bid:

If you know anything about human rights and the Chinese Communist Party, well, you’d know the two don’t really gel that much.

The Communist Party in China is well known to be sensitive about a lot of things, and it’s certainly hypersensitive about its dismal human rights record.

The Party is also a well-known persecutor of dissenters and minorities.

Toronto-based Lin is also a practitioner of the Falun Gong meditation practice, a peaceful non-political spiritual discipline that has been brutally persecuted by the communist authorities in China since 1999. If you’ve read about forced organ harvesting in China, then you know what I’m referring to when I say brutal.

As stated earlier, Lin this year won the Miss World Canada crown, but the pressure against her from continuing further has been much more than the 2013 email.

Because human rights is part her platform for Miss World, Lin’s father in China has been pressured by state security agencies. She said her father was initially very proud that she had won the title, but within days he was forced to ask his daughter to halt her advocacy or he would sever contact with her.

“My initial reaction was: ‘Of course I’m not going to speak about this anymore. My family is in danger,'” Lin told Reuters.

“But after a few days of thinking, I realized if they’re able to silence me now, I won’t ever get a chance to speak again because they know that this tactic will work on me, [that] I will submit to their manipulation this way,” Lin said.

“And also, more international attention will actually bring safety to my father, bring more protection to my father. I believe that.”

Watch an interview with Radio Free Asia about Lin’s human rights work and her Miss World Canada title:

As stated upfront of this post, it appears Lin may not be able to attend the Miss World final; this is because she has yet to receive an invite from the China-based host that she needs to have so she can apply for a visa.

“The other contestants, some of them told me, that they got [their invite] on October 30,” Lin told Reuters.

“Right now, we are about 10 days away from the visa cut off,” she added. “So by November 20, if I don’t have my visa, I won’t be able to go to the Miss World Final. I’ll be automatically disqualified.”

There has been very little information about the lack of an invite coming from the event organizers in China who have close financial ties with London-based Miss World Ltd., who, going by media reports, are not doing very much to assist Lin.

So as the clock ticks, it appears that the non-issuing of the invite, and subsequently the visa, may keep her from attending the final event on the mainland.

But even if she doesn’t get to go to China, Lin’s brave efforts to highlight what the regime is doing to the Chinese people makes her role as Miss World Canada very much a success in its own right already.

Watch Anastasia Lin provide a testimony at the U.S. Congressional Executive Commission on China in July this year:

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