Friday, 8 August 2008

The Olympics: why I am uneasy

And yet, and yet. I don't know how to respond to the fact that this Olympics is being held in China.

Amnesty International's monitoring involves four main areas: repression of activists, detention without trial, censorship and the death penalty.
Each of these areas give cause for concern.

This of course is without mentioning China's actions in Tibet. AI's last report says "The recent protests in Tibet and Tibetan-populated areas of surrounding provinces and the subsequent crackdown and media silence imposed by authorities highlighted not only longstanding and unresolved violations of fundamental human rights but also on-going censorship of the media."

Today, as the ceremony proceeds, there are people being tortured by the state because of what they believe or say. At least one person will be executed for one of 68 crimes punishable by death.

I am not sure how to react, but I do think there is something in the 'shining a light on the issue' viewpoint. The more we open a society to outside influence, the more we understand and the closer we come to change. It's understanding that brings change.

But this doesn't leave me feeling anything other than uneasy.

One Olympics, one world, one party state.

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