"Validate the Fa with reason, clarify the truth with wisdom, spread the Fa and offer people salvation with benevolence" (Rationality)
A Letter from a Practitioner to CNN Regarding the Self-Immolation Incident in Tiananmen Square
Dear Ms. Rebecca MacKinnon,
As a Falun Gong practitioner, I was saddened to watch your video presentation on the Tiananmen incident.
In your presentation, you implied that the people who set themselves on fire were Falun Gong practitioners.
You said, "one camera caught these fleeting pictures from far away and got passed the police." "...Four women walked along. Their bodies are flaming, holding their hands up in a classic Falun Gong meditation pose."
Then you passed on the Chinese government's propaganda to the whole world: "The government has been blaming Li Hongzhi, the founder of the Falun Gong meditation group living in exile in New York. The state run media says he has hoodwinked the five suicide protesters with his evil fallacies."
First of all, I think it is not appropriate to make such a casual connection between "holding hands up" and "a classic Falun Gong meditation pose". During severe pain from the flames, it is reasonable that the suicide victim may struggle with all kinds of arm poses. In America, and in China as well, when police arrest people, they demand people raise their hands above their heads, should you also say these people are holding their hands up in a classic Falun Gong pose? Your connection is not appropriate.
Second, I think it is a risky behavior for CNN's reputation to use the Chinese government's words. As you admitted, it is "state run" media. The Chinese government, as the largest totalitarian regime in the world, does not allow freedom of the press. The propaganda war against Falun Gong in China is one-sided. For a government that dared to violate its own Constitution and ate its word after signing the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights in October 1998, what credibility does its propaganda have?
Through the above two pieces of information, people are easily misled and have an impression that Falun Gong practitioners set themselves on fire and Mr. Li hoodwinked people to do this.
In fact, Mr. Li has been teaching people the principles of peace: Truthfulness, Benevolence and Forbearance. He clearly prohibits any form of killing, including suicide. In one of his books, a practitioner asked: "The third question is the issue of killing as mentioned in the book. Killing a life is a very big sin. If a person commits suicide, does it count as a sin or not?" Mr Li said: "It counts as a sin..."
From here, it is obvious that the Chinese government's propaganda is a sheer lie.
Its purpose is to destroy Falun Gong's reputation to justify its brutal persecution that has been responsible for more than 130 deaths of practitioners. For two consecutive years, Mr. Li has been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize for his contribution to world peace. Over 300 US cities have given recognition of the benefits of Falun Gong and the contribution Mr. Li has made to American society.
Dear Ms. MacKinnon, we believe you, as one of the chief representatives CNN, a world media giant, will see through the Chinese government's vicious lies and speak for millions of people who are suffering in China instead of being deceived. We believe you will soon help eliminate the possible negative influence on Falun Gong's reputation in your January 24, 2001 reports.