(Minghui.org) For many people in Shanghai, the biggest city in China and a global financial hub, they are always in a hurry, coming and going quickly. The COVID-19 lockdown since late March 2022 has not only brought their fast-paced life to a sudden halt, but also prompted them to speak out against to draconian measures.

Shanghai residents have been facing the most difficult time in their lives since late March. Amid the strict lockdown, lack of food and access to non-Covid medical care have left many in a dire situation, perhaps taking more lives than COVID-19 itself.

Despite the Chinese Communist Party (CCP)’s vigorous Internet control that includes monitoring, removing postings, and banning accounts, many people in Shanghai have managed to post short videos, jokes, and messages, giving the outside world a glimpse of how disastrous Shanghai is.

For example,

- A young father went to the hospital’s emergence room, but the doctors wouldn’t render medical attention until his PCR test result came out. He passed away while waiting for his test result, leaving behind his wife and their five-year-old child.

- A video showed that infants were taken away from their parents for quarantine and several were put in a bed without much care.

- A young couple argued with a Covid worker who came to take them to a makeshift hospital for quarantine. The couple said that something was wrong since their test results were negative, but the worker said he didn’t care and his job was to take them, so they must go with him otherwise he would use force.

- A video showed how bad the condition inside a makeshift hospital is; a person couldn’t stand it anymore and climbed to the roof, wanting to jump off.

- Over 200 professors of Tongji University wrote a letter asking for help: they were about to exhaust all the food they had and the elderly among them were running out of their medication.

The Shanghai lockdown has made many people for the first time feel that freedom is no longer an abstract concept; freedom of speech is tied to the food on their plates.

They then creatively posted their experiences on their group chats or the Internet, to express their resentment towards the CCP’s zero-Covid policy and their distrust of the government.

What the CCP is afraid of has appeared: revelation of truth mushrooms everywhere.

Freedom of speech does not mean to create super heroes who motivate the public via grand talk; it is about letting everyone get an opportunity to speak out their own requests. An individual’s words may sound trivial in front of the CCP’s gigantic propaganda machine and fierce iron fist, but once every tiny drop merges together, it becomes a powerful force.

If everyone dares to speak out for themselves, they would form a powerful force that pursues freedom. They will also reveal to the world that the CCP has always ignored human rights and even people’s lives.

Falun Gong Practitioners Have Been Speaking Out Since April 25, 1999

In fact, Falun Gong group might be the first group in China that has persistently sought justice for their rights to freedom of belief over the past two decades.

When Tianjin police arrested dozens of Falun Gong practitioners on April 23, 1999, around 10,000 practitioners from the vicinity of Beijing appealed outside the State Council Appeals Office in Beijing two days later. Their appeal was peaceful – no slogans or banners; they only stood on the street without shouting or taking actions.

They requested three things from the authorities: One, release the arrested Tianjin practitioners. Two, provide a normal environment for people to practice Falun Gong. And three, allow Falun Gong books to be published via normal channels. Then Premier of China talked to the representatives of the practitioners and provided positive answers. Practitioners then left and the event ended peacefully. This was the “April 25 Peaceful Appeal.”

However, the CCP started the persecution of Falun Gong on July 20, 1999 and continues to this day. Falun Gong practitioners have since been working tirelessly to defend their rights. They persisted in this not just for themselves, but also for the general public to have freedom of religion and freedom of speech.

The CCP decides whether to give people freedom. But it is up to everyone to decide whether to speak out for their own right to freedom.