On behalf of the Toronto Association for Democracy in China, we join the world in mourning the death of Liu Xiao Bo.
And we join the world in condemning the Chinese government.
For China is shown once again that it is weak and cowardly – so fearful of this soft-spoken man of words and reason that the Chinese regime locked up its nation’s first Nobel Peace Laureate. Despite its swagger, China has a fragile ego. It could not handle the world’s respect; abide by international recognition; or live up to the expectation of transforming itself into a true world leader. For some reason, China insists on remaining backward.
Liu, who championed non-violent resistance as a way of overcoming “forceful tyranny” is described as the “best kind of dissident”. He was bold and outspoken. He did not foment revolution nor was he a trigger for upheaval. Liu Xiaobo encouraged peaceful discussion. He was China’s Mandela. His Charter 08 was clear in its demand for an end to one-party rule and for genuine freedoms.
Canada could have said and done more for Liu, but it did not. Yet, like many nations, Canada and China are both signatories to the United Nationals Declaration of Human Rights – “ … all human rights are born free and equal in dignity and rights.”
Our hearts go out to Liu Xia, Liu Xiao’s wife. The famous Chinese adage that women hold up half the sky speaks to Liu Xiao, who, despite official harassment and detention, steadfastly stood in her husband’s place as China attempted to silence him.