‘The Defender of Human Rights’ Is Making a Fool of Itself

The killing of a black teenager by a white police officer has evolved into “the longest period of public unrest since the Vietnam War.”* American police have used smoke grenades, tear gas and armored vehicles to disperse demonstrators. One 90-year-old Holocaust survivor, Herdy Esptein, was arrested for failure to disperse. “The treatment of citizens by police forces in America looks just like the Middle East and North Africa.”* “America, the upholder of human rights, is once again feeling the shame of self-embarrassment.”*

On Aug. 19, having learned lessons from America’s actions on human rights in Egypt, people “threw America’s stones at America,”* demanding “the American government show restraint and respect people’s rights to free assembly and free speech.”* The governments and media of Iran, Syria, Turkey and other countries have all criticized America.

Protestors have been committing vandalism; according to American common logic, responsibility must lie with government corruption, institutional corruption and a non-transparent media. However, America has not looked at its own policies regarding racial discrimination, detaining reporters and suppressing protestors. “America’s liberal democracy is built upon order.”* “Once reasonable demonstrators cannot be dealt with within the scope of American law and regulation, the machine that is the U.S. state will crush its own citizens as if they were rocks, and as if it was a gravel-maker.”* It seems to Americans that so-called “god-given rights” and “human rights above sovereignty” are just a figure of speech when it comes to dealing with its own internal governance.

The riots and unrest in America have drawn attention away from the rest of the world; [the rest of the world] wants to see “if America wants to use its own logic on itself.”* “America is always lecturing others, but when it comes to itself, it says one thing and does another.”* “Maybe the defender of human rights doesn’t think it looks so good now?” On what credentials can America be the world’s leader?

America’s racial discrimination has deep roots, and little has changed despite Obama’s election as the first African-American president in history. “Apart from his father being black, Obama’s upbringing and education are more like those of elite, white families. This ‘image’ is just like Princess Diana being a so-called ‘average citizen’ — it is just something used to numb the lower class and maintain a façade.”*

In the area where this latest incident occurred, despite two-thirds of locals being African-American, out of 53 police officers only three are black. In addition, of six city council members, five are white. This is a microcosm of inequality and the divide between the majority and minorities in America.

If you follow foreign media, the phrase “human rights” forms the core of American foreign policy. For many years, America has served as both the spokesperson and the referee of human rights, intervening in the domestic affairs of many different countries. Little do people know, America is also one of the worst offenders of human rights toward its own citizens. The NSA’s PRISM project, unmanned drone attacks, the prison at Guantanamo Bay, the global mistreatment of prisoners, etc., have all received sharp rebuke from the international community. The Chinese idiom, “Not thinking about one’s actions, but only of others’ wrongs,” is appropriate here. The American government should take another look at itself before criticizing others.

America doesn’t realize a clearly evident fact: What goes around, comes around. Not just in other countries but also in the U.S., these kinds of events can also occur. If you use these two kinds of standards to gesticulate and lecture others, it is inevitable you will make a fool of yourself!

*Editor’s note: The original quotations, accurately translated, could not be verified.

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