"Car Tour Around the US to Rescue Charles Li" Receives Warm Support from People along the Way (Photos)
(Clearwisdom.net August 19, 2003)The car tour around the US to rescue Charles Li left San Francisco, and on the way northward, we traveled through the cities of Corvallis, Eugene and Salem, the capital city of Oregon. Many people saw our display boards and slowed down their vehicles to request materials about Charles Li. They also encouraged us by making the hand gesture of victory.
The car tour gains support from the mayor of Eugene, Oregon
On August 16, 2003, the "Car Tour Around the US to Rescue Charles Li" held photo exhibits and collected signatures in the cities of Corvallis, Eugene and Salem in Oregon. In Salem, more than 80 officials from offices of state senators and representatives of Oregon listened to the urgent appeal from the members of the car tour and representatives of the local practitioners, and expressed their support for the rescue of Charles Li. In Eugene, the mayor sent his assistant to tell all members of the car tour, "I support all that you have done."
The local media paid great attention to the car tour. The Gazette Times in Corvallis and two TV stations KPNW and KLCC from the central area of Oregon made an
in-depth interview and covered the event.
A Western practitioner said in an interview with KLCC TV Station, "American Falun Gong practitioner Charles Li has been tortured and abused by the Chinese government; in order to rescue him, we have collected more than 10,000 signatures. We will continue our signature collection. All these will make a difference, and the public's attention will make a difference." The reporter expressed that everybody should support the rescue drive, regardless of whether or not he or she is an American citizen. Many American people have learned about the illegal detention of Charles Li and that he is suffering inhuman persecution in a Chinese jail.
|Holding a photo exhibit with the local practitioners||A passerby is learning the exercise||Collecting signatures|
|Collecting signatures||Signing names on the yellow cloth||Being interviewed|
During the photo exhibit in Salem, a 60-year-old woman came up to the display board and said to Ms. Zhang Xuerong that she had planned to go to a place across the river, but she had no idea why she got off at a wrong station, and why she got off the bus. She said, "It seems that God asks me to come and do something." She signed her name on the signature-collection book and also on the yellow cloth. She also signed the names of her daughter, grandson and granddaughter. She said that everybody should enjoy the freedom of belief. She took a pile of Dafa truth-clarifying materials before leaving and said she would pass those materials to her friends.
One of the members of the car tour, Ms. Shen Shumin said,"In the past several days, I've felt that the American people are very kind and righteous, and they wholeheartedly show sympathy and understanding and support for our efforts to rescue Charles Li. Sometimes, the display boards were blown down by the wind, and people passing by would lift them up and arrange them well. They are quite enthusiastic in signing their names."
A press conference is held in Seattle, and many public officials send letters to express their support
The car tour traveled through Portland in Oregon, the capital city Olympia, and the city of Tacoma in the state of Washington, and arrived at Seattle on August 17. Five members of the car tour and local practitioners jointly held a press conference to clarify the truth, and call for people from all walks of life to extend their help to rescue Charles Li.
|Ms. Shen Shumin speaks at the press conference||At Olympia, the capital city of the state of Washington||Clarifying the truth to tourists|
At the press conference, Ms. Shen Shumin from California talked about the persecution she had suffered in China. During the Chinese Spring Festival in 2001, prior to the staged "Self-immolation in Tiananmen Square," the Chinese authorities arrested and abducted Falun Gong practitioners on a large scale, in order to block the news, and created an environment for staging the tragedy. Police broke into Ms. Shen's home, and smashed the windows, her whole family had to spend seven days and nights in the cold wind during the Chinese Lunar New Year. Whenever "sensitive days" approached, she would be abducted and detained. Shen Shumin also told us the story of a fellow practitioner Ms. Zhu at her practice site who was illegally sentenced to four years in jail, and whose father could not bear the attack and passed away. Shen Shumin said that countless families of Falun Gong practitioners have been torn apart under the terror in China.
Steve from California and two Western sisters Dafa practitioners talked about the abduction and illegal detention they suffered during their peaceful appeal in February 2002 in China. They called for people from all walks of life to show concern for the persecution that American citizen Charles Li is suffering. They said, "We are here to offer an opportunity for fellow practitioners in China who have no chance to voice their appeals."
Seattle practitioners also read several supporting letters from government officials in Washington. State Senator Mr. Richard Conlin expressed in his letter, "I was shocked to learn about the physical and mental torture Dr. Charles Li is suffering; I believe that people have the right to choose their beliefs and practice, but should not be subjected to persecution for doing so."
Washington State Representative Mr. Eric Pettigrew said in his letter,"Your rescue effort through a car tour is a great tradition that the American people protest against injustice. You will ultimately win, and I have no doubt about it!"
Many visitors were moved by the practitioners' experience. An American who came to Seattle to travel from the city where Charles Li lived said surprisingly after learning about the detailed information, "I just came back from Nanjing, China, but I didn't know that Charles Li is being detained there. I indeed saw quite a few police in Nanjing." He signed his name to show his support for Charles Li and said that he would bring the news home and tell people and the government about it."
One visitor asked a practitioner after the press conference, "Can you achieve any effect by doing this?" The practitioner said, "Every righteous voice is a piece of strength." He said agreeably, "I've signed my name to support you. "
To the accompaniment of the Dafa music "Pu Du," more and more people learned about the truth and joined us to appeal for the rescue of Falun Gong practitioners.
Texas group arrives in Louisiana
Falun Gong practitioners in the southern states of the US also joined our rescue drive. On Saturday (August 16), the southern group led by practitioners in Texas held a press conference and set out from Houston to launch a rescue tour. They would travel through the states of Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Florida, Tennessee, Arkansas, Oklahoma, and Kansas, collecting signatures from the public, accepting interviews from the media and visiting local governments.
On the morning of August 17, the southern group of the car tour arrived at the first stop: Lake Charles in Louisiana. They displayed a series of photo boards and banners in front of the City Hall, and peacefully practiced the exercises. Heather, who worked at a local newspaper, came to tell the practitioners,"I learned about your car tour to rescue Mr. Li from the newspaper, and I want to sign my name to support your efforts." She had a conversation with practitioners and learned more about the persecution that Mr. Li is suffering in China.
In the afternoon, the southern group drove to another city, Lafayette, and the local CBS TV Station made a special report on their activity.