Sunday, August 24, 2008

China's Black Eye

China has more ethical dilemmas than just how they treat their athletes. By numerous accounts, China has been using the international attention toward the games to justify and simultaneously conceal their crack-down on dissidents and Christians. Numerous house-churches have been raided, their pastors banished or imprisoned, and their members harassed and persecuted.

China has also deported a number of U.S. citizens who staged illegal protests of China's treatment of Tibetans. While important, the issue with protesters leads the headlines over China's treatment of Christians. Our government, which has openly chastised China for its repression of dissenting expression, has said relatively little concerning the persecution of Christians. The United States Ambassador to China, Clark T. Randt, Jr., said after a round of deportations, "We encourage the government of China to demonstrate respect for human rights, including freedom of expression and freedom of religion, of all people during the Olympic Games and beyond . . . We are disappointed that China has not used the occasion of the Olympics to demonstrate greater tolerance and openness." Indeed.

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