Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Journalists oppose China's Rose Parade float

Look here to see the giant billboard. Hat tip to Ann Lau and the Visual Guild. And look here for a related article.

Southland NewsMonday, December 03, 2007 | 10:10 PM

Human rights groups are angry that China has been given permission to have a float in next year's Rose Parade, and they want you to know it.

Monday, a billboard was unveiled to protest China's treatment of journalists. The diplomatic storm is intensifying in Pasadena.

They call themselves "Reporters Without Borders," and Monday they unveiled a billboard in Pasadena, not far from the Rose Parade route.

The billboard takes a stand against China's entry in this year's Rose Parade. Protesters are urging parade organizers and city leaders to keep the float from appearing in the parade, which is seen worldwide.

The billboard represents the Olympic rings, but features handcuffs instead, symbolizing what the group says is China's imprisonment of journalists in the country.

Reporters Without Borders says the Chinese government is censoring the media and restricting their rights. The group also says Chinese officials are detaining Internet users who may be taking a stand against the government.

Protesters go on to say that the Chinese government has even warned journalists to be careful about what they say in regards to the upcoming Summer Games in Beijing.

"This means more arrests of dissidents. This means no more social protest, and more censorship," said Lucie Morillon, U.S. director of Reporters Without Borders. "We also learned that the propaganda department sends to the leading Chinese media a directive telling them not to write negative stories about issues affecting the games."

This would be the first time China has ever taken part in the Rose Parade with a float. This year's float was to commemorate the 2008 Olympics in Beijing. Protesters are now threatening to demonstrate during the parade if that float is allowed to take part.

OLYMPIC WATCH: Human Rights in China and Beijing 2008


marcus tate photographer said...

I was one of the photographer in the booth and you guys were a joke. A couple of loud women with bullhorns and guys with black hoods over their heads making them look like terrorists. So what now?

MaKina said...

...changes are about to happen Marcus. Anything that will get the attention of the media these days is what needs to be done right now to draw the attention to the terrible human rights record of the Olympic host. Otherwise the media is too lazy when it comes to telling the truth about China.

It's clear that China as Olympic host is the by far the real farce!

Thanks for your good work though!

Specul8 said...

Democracy is just like any other phenomenon such as beauty: it is in the eye of the beholder. Your version democracy is as good as my version of democracy as long as you don't impose your views on mine and vice versa and treat each other with respect. Else, it will no longer be consider yours as democracy because you have imposed your view without considering mine and everybody else.

Do not use World Athletes as scapegoat to impose your views either or your principle of Democracy will be groundless.

MaKina said...

The World Athletes need to know the truth...I certainly would if I were in their shoes. To have the Olympics used by Beijing as a tool of repression is certainly a red flag. And the fact that the free world is able to recognize this and question China's abilities to host the Olympics because they don't qualify--according to the Olympic Charter--is a force for good! It's not too late to relocate the Games. In 2004, the IOC threatened Greece to relocate the Games 6 months before the opening date, for different reasons. The athletes have to act responsibly too--the choice will be theirs. But they won't be able to say "I DIDN'T KNOW that China was killing peaceful Falun Gong for their organs and torturing priests and nuns for their beliefs, etc.."...there lies the difference with the 1936 Olympics.