People in Sado Island Have Not Heard About the Facts Regarding the Persecution
Since practitioner Yoko Kaneko was arrested and sentenced to labour camp in Beijing, Japanese practitioners have gone to Congress and various members of the local government to clarify the truth and submit letters of appeal. They also held many activities to collect signatures and distribute materials. After learning the true situation, many people, from congressmen to the general populace, actively supported the activity to rescue Yoko Kaneko. A national car-tour to rescue Yoko Kaneko is on the way and many major media have broadcasted positive reports. However, in Niigata, where Yoko Kaneko is from, there was no major breakthrough even though practitioners held parades and clarified the truth to several senators. This time we want to clarify the truth to the Niigata government, so that they could make some effort to rescue Yoko Kaneko. After calling several senators, we were told that they could not do much unless Sado Island initiated an effort. We then decided to go there the next morning, although at that moment we still did not know what exactly needed to be done.
It took us about two and half hours to get from Niigata to Sado Island by ferry. There were few residents and they live a distance apart from each other. Therefore, it is difficult to transport materials without a car. And being the vacation season, there are many tourists. This makes it difficult to find a hotel room and rent a car. I chose to distribute Dafa materials and collect signatures at the busiest areas. There were only a few supermarkets and almost no people on the street. We then decided to collect signatures door to door. Most residents had not heard about this issue, and almost everyone signed their names.
We all felt that going door to door was a good way to thoroughly clarify the truth. People were willing to listen and quite often, the whole family signed our petitions. Some people asked if the signature drive was initiated by the town government office and suggested that we talk to the head of the town. We realised that we needed to clarify the truth to the general populace as well as local administrative offices. We talked to the town head, and he had not heard about the issue. In the place where Yoko Kaneko came from, most people had not heard about it. This made us realise the seriousness of the situation. Meanwhile, we understood the purpose of this trip and came up with some strategies.
Grasp Every Chance to Clarify the Truth
In order to solidify ourselves as a whole body and keep our righteous minds, we practised, sent forth righteous thoughts, and studied the Fa [principles and teachings of Falun Gong contained in the book Zhuan Falun] in the morning. After that, some practitioners clarified the truth to the head of the town; some continued to go door to door; and others distributed materials. When we gathered again in the evening, we were often exhausted, but we reminded ourselves of the purpose of the trip. We then gathered ourselves together and drove for half an hour to the supermarkets and other stores, where we collected signatures until closing time.
We often had unexpected results. When we went to the local government office, we did not see the head of the town. Instead we met with a director. After hearing about the rescue effort for Yoko Kaneko, he was very understanding and sympathetic, and signed his name. He also suggested to his staff that they sign their names and allowed us to display our newspaper about the story of Yoko Kaneko. We also ran into the senator and clarified the truth to him. We made an appointment with the head of the town. One time we met a Chinese person and clarified the truth to her with good results.
Clarifying the Truth to Local Officials Together
There are two congressmen on Sado Island. Practitioners have contacted one of them. However, due to the influence by the Chinese government propaganda, he has a negative attitude. Some practitioners wanted to meet with him, while others thought that he was too deeply poisoned by the lies and would not do much for us. However, after discussing the matter between us we came to the understanding that it is not important what the congressmen does for us but that he has the opportunity to hear the truth.
We made an appointment and met with him at 7:30 pm. We told him of the activities we had held during the past several days. He shared his standpoints toward the Chinese government. In fact, he agreed with the persecution by Jiang's regime. We showed him the booklet "The path of Fa rectification." The booklet begins with information about the spreading of the Fa and how it benefits people physically and mentally, and finishes with information about the persecution and Yoko Kaneko's situation. The congressman is a talkative person. He was born in China and knows a lot about it. He enjoys talking about Chinese history and geography, and we chatted along with him. If the topic went too far off track, we came back to the topic and clarified the truth. If one failed, another practitioner would follow. Meanwhile, we kept sending forth righteous thoughts. Gradually he changed his attitude. He said that Falun Gong practitioners are good people and it is good for people's health. He looked at the signatures we collected very carefully and asked why we did not collect many signatures from Hamochi town on Sado Island. We told him that we planned to go there next day. He encouraged us to collect more signatures, especially in Hamochi. At last, he suggested to us that we should try to get the Japanese government to pass a resolution that condemns the persecution. Although he did not do too much for us due to his special situation, we believe that he now understands the facts a lot better.
Clarifying the Truth in Hamochi
On the last day of our stay in Sado Island, several practitioners went to Hamochi, where Yoko Kaneko had resided. They met with the head of the town and told him of the activities that we had held in Sado Island. He kept saying, "Thank you!" He knew about Yoko Kaneko's story but very little about Falun Gong. He said that he would do what he could to help rescue Yoko Kaneko.
It is just the Beginning of the Truth Clarification on Sado Island
During our stay in Sado Island, we visited one city, seven towns, and two villages. We visited several hundred families and collected almost one thousand signatures. Before we left, we collected signatures in front of stores. Nearly everyone signed their names and carefully listened to us. We will certainly come back because there are still so many people who have not learnt the facts of the persecution against Falun Dafa and Yoko Kaneko.
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