In 1970, Zhang Hongbing was a young idealistic and indoctrinated teenaged member of the Red Guard – the legion of fanatical youth who answered Mao’s call to purge communist china of all bad elements in the Cultural Revolution of the 1960’s and 70’s.
His mother, Fang Zhongmou, was a doctor in the eastern Chinese province of Anhui, who had originally supported the Communist Revolution – but by 1970 was disillusioned by Mao’s policies and began criticsing the chairman in the privacy of her home.
Detecting a revisionist and anti-party enemy by the words of his mother, Zhang denounced her for her criticism. Aided by his father, also a revolutionary zealot, they reported Fang to the police. She subsequently arrested and executed her for the crime of speaking out against Chairman Mao.
Lyrics of that song:
天大地大不如党的恩情大 Heaven and earth are not as great as the gift of the Party
爹亲娘亲不如毛主席亲 Our parents are close but not as close as Chairman Mao
千好万好不如社会主义好 Even the best things on earth are not as good as socialism
河深海深不如阶级友爱深 Rivers and seas are not as deep as our comradeship
毛泽东思想是革命的宝 Mao Zedong Thought is the treasure of revolution
谁要是反对它 Anyone who opposes it
谁就是我们的敌人 is our enemy
Zhang Hongbing doesn’t want the same madness to rule the minds of Chinese people again, but recent developments may disappoint him. Teachers, siblings, spouses and even parents have been reported to the authorities for insulting heroes or disgracing China.
The Cultural Revolution destroyed Chinese civilisation as we knew it.