The Truth Behind the "Million Signatures" Against Falun Gong
This article was first published in May 2001.
Not long ago, Chinese human rights representatives presented the International Human Rights Commission with a long scroll of a million signatures opposing Falun Gong. The scroll weighed about two tons. They used the scroll in an unsuccessful attempt to demonstrate the Chinese people's deep hatred of Falun Gong, and to justify the government's determination to eliminate it. They also showed some TV clips with people indignantly denouncing Falun Gong or acting like they were signing forms opposing Falun Gong. They made it appear as though the crackdown on Falun Gong had its "reasons, process, and results." The political persecution of Falun Gong practitioners had not reached its peak till then.
In response to these activities, Falun Gong practitioners would like to expose the truth behind one such signing event. This particular activity took place at an elementary school in the mountains west of Liao Ning. Hopefully, this example can help clarify the truth behind the whole "million signature" drive.
Several days after the new semester began in March 2001, over a thousand students received a red flyer from the school entitled "Announcement." The students were asked to show this to their parents. The flyer had six points: "Uphold Science, Refuse Flyers (Clarifying the true facts about Falun Gong)", etc. Three days later, in the morning, the school halted all classes and started the signature drive opposing Falun Gong. They put four tables on the playground and the school leaders and teachers started collecting the signatures. One teacher sympathized with Falun Gong practitioners and refused to sign. His best friend, however, was afraid the teacher would get into trouble, so he secretly signed for him.
All the students were asked to stand in a line. After they were counted, the students were then asked to walk to the tables and sign their names. At the same time, seven or eight teachers stood by the tables monitoring them. It seemed like "sign it or else." One fifth grade student who was a practitioner was also forced to sign. After he signed, a teacher asked him to tell all of the students and teachers why Falun Gong is good. He said, "Falun Gong is just good." "How about the self-immolation in Tiananmen Square," they asked. He said, "It is false." In the end, all the teachers and students swore to "study hard and uphold science." The little practitioner, however, was suspended from class because of his attitude towards the activity. He was also asked to stand in the teacher's office and be educated (like in the re-education classes). The school finally fined him five hundred RMB Yuan (about 60 dollars).
Those students with confused minds participated in the activity against Falun Gong without even knowing what they were doing. Even the six or seven year old preschool kids scribbled their names, though they had just learned how to write them. In this way, the government tried to show how deeply the Chinese people dislike Falun Gong. They forgot, however, that children are unable to discern their political preferences. This school took part in the so-called "Million Signature Event." The same was also true with other schools. Who would cause trouble by not signing their name? China has billions of people? What is the big deal about obtaining a million signatures? For political purposes, the government could even make a list of a billion signatures, but what would it represent?
In the past, the government spread rumors, deceiving the Chinese people at will. Now, they have spread these tricks to the world. They have lobbied and deceived people everywhere, even at the United Nations.
I would not hesitate to ask, "Who is defying the world, and who is against humanity?"
A Mainland Outsider
On April 15, 2001