China is, apparently, to resume a human rights dialogue with the United States of America. This can only be good news for the still homeless victims of hurricane katrina, palastinian refugees and 3 million displaced Iraqis. Perhaps waterboarding will also be on the agenda along with rendition. It would be a welcome step forward if these talks helped under privileged and ethnic minorities receive access to free welfare and education.
It is perhaps well worth remembering that the chinese mainland has only been a member of the UN since 1971. They have some catching up to do . . . . but are learning fast. In common with the USA the supreme judiciary are hand picked by a president. The electorate,through various committees and regional caucuses nominate a presidential candidate, they are then invited to cast a vote. I would never suggest that vote rigging occurs in either country. Perceived ‘enemies of the state’ having been subject to "witch hunts" are ostracised and imprisoned with or without trial. Access to current affairs and the internet is restricted by a national phobia for the truth. "If you are not with us you are against us." Anyone who has watched cnn or cctv will know what I mean! The distinction between the two becomes blurred.
In the UN preamble on human rights it says, "Human rights should be protected by the rule of law." What it does not say is, whose law? Does a 200 year old constitution, written by terrorists, having overthrown an imperialist power, outweigh a 5,000 year old culture which has made and rescinded more laws than you can shake a stick at?
In a country where society is slowly sinking into the moral morass of a poor diet, sickening soaps and a gun culture, I wonder why the new emerging middle class in china crave for this, the "american dream"? A country where innocent children never know when the next gunman will wander into their classroom and spray them with bullets. One where the not so well off are sneered at by the not so wealthy. One which casts out royalty then embraces its own "dynasties".
I sit here, thanks for the help of america, in a FREE country – one which has more surveillance cameras than the rest of europe put together. One where armed police and army, guard national institutions. Where I am not encouraged to use the word "ethnic" – it has racial overtones. The place where we percieve the criminal has more human rights than the victim. A place that chooses who my friends or enemies are; which religion is ‘preferable’; and where you, my foreign friends, no longer have free access. I am not sure my parents, certainly my grandparents, would recognise, my England.
The sleeping dragon is stirring whilst the once proud eagle struts its stuff like a vulture. So will they swop examples: maybe 2 iraqs = one tibet.. .but I have no doubt that the victorian song will ring true…" Its the rich that gets the pleasure and the poor who gets the pain".
Anyone who takes offence at this rant, remember I have no right to silence, just article 19 of the UN bill of human rights :
Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this
right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to
seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and
regardless of frontiers.