Contrasting Photos

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When I speak to people in Mainland China about Falun Gong and the persecution, I find that people often use the arrests of protesters in other countries as excuses why the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) should be allowed to persecute the people of China. They say that "all crows are just as black under the sky." If Western countries can arrest protesters, then it's all right for the CCP to abuse human rights. These Chinese people feel justified to be indifferent about this unprecedented persecution that is currently happening in China.

The CCP's lips are shut tight regarding its own human rights abuses, yet year after year, it "exposes" in its media the protests in Western democratic countries. To the people of China, it almost seems that the CCP is a defender of human rights, seeking human rights for people in Western countries.

Recently I sent some Falun Gong related photos to a friend in Mainland China. After seeing them, he asked me if I knew of an "Anti-War Mother" who went to President Bush's ranch and the White House to protest, and who was subsequently arrested by the police. My friend meant to tell me that all countries are the same when it comes to human rights.

I visited a few China-based websites and saw that this "Anti-War Mother" was the focus of reporting by Chinese media. No wonder my friend was so certain.

I found a picture of Cindy Sheehan being arrested. To my surprise, she was been lifted up and was smiling from ear to ear. She was charged with demonstrating without a permit. The police arrested her after three warnings. The contrast between her arrest and how Falun Gong practitioners are treated on Tiananmen Square is quite astounding. I sent the following two pictures to my friend, wondering what he thought.

"Anti-War Mother" Cindy Sheehan was smiling when she was arrested on September 26 (Reuters Photo)

Two plainclothes police abuse a Falun Gong practitioner on Tiananmen Square

Actually, my friend's reaction was pretty typical of Mainland Chinese people whose thinking is heavily shaped by the CCP. It reflects many incorrect notions, such as the following:

1. What other people do should not be taken on the surface as a standard to judge something as right or wrong. For example, someone who has committed a brutal murder should be punished accordingly. This is a heavenly principle. The fact that murder happens in the United States doesn't justify other murders in China.

2. Western media often have a large amount of reporting on public demonstrations. The materials and photos for the CCP's "Anti-War Mother" reports basically came from media in the United States. On the other hand, the CCP has not reported at all on the persecution of Falun Gong practitioners. Even Western reporters who have honestly reported the truth were sent a warning or deported from China.

3. No comparison can be drawn between the CCP's abuse of human rights and implementing the rule of law in Western countries, which typically is predicated on respect for human rights. The basic concepts and nature are fundamentally different. The two photos demonstrate clearly the difference in how the police in the two countries treat objects of their enforcement. The "Anti-War Mother" was lifted up by the police. The police were careful not to violate her rights. In China, the police not only stepped on the peaceful Falun Gong demonstrator, but also held a handcuff to his throat. In the persecution of Falun Gong, Chinese police, state security staff, labour camp staff, and other law enforcement personnel frequently severely injure and even kill Falun Gong practitioners.

4. A political regime is not measured by the action of one administration or one president. The true benchmark should be whether the regime is able to control and balance social forces, correct its past mistakes, and improve. Every human being makes mistakes. The question is after a mistake, whether the regime has a mechanism to correct itself, learn from the mistake, and listen to the people's voices. The CCP persecutes the Chinese people and tries its best to hide the facts of the persecution. It is entirely a closed system of crime. All channels that enable the victims to give feedback as a right granted by law and allow the people to express their voices are defined as illegal. Such a system is not even remotely comparable to the open Western environment in which people enjoy freedoms of speech and belief.

The Chinese people can only recognise the brutal and evil nature of the CCP and understand this persecution with rationality and clarity in their own thinking when they jump out of the frame of thought distorted by the CCP's brainwashing. They must separate themselves from the CCP. Only then can they distinguish the good from the bad, the kind from the evil. Only then can they work together to terminate this persecution, make the right choice for their lives, and contribute to the long-term well-being of the Chinese nation.

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