It’s not too often that Chinese citizens are made so angry to the point of staging public protests. There is a lot of private chit chat. But people appear to be so programed or fearful to go against the huge and powerful political machine that can literally make one disappear without a trace.
Where I was at this 109 acres “public” square, you could see tourists and hawkers selling kites, souvenirs, including the upcoming 2008 Beijing Olympics Game. There were also a few troops of soldiers marching in formation.
I saw a woman far away across the Square who quickly held up a small sign. It was too small to see but I could see how quickly a marching troop reached her. Her sign was taken and she was taken away.
I wanted to go over and check it out but my husband said if I went, I would probably end up in jail too. He was probably correct.
Currently, the ongoing protests in China is probably as bothersome to the authorities as the Tiananmen Square. Covid lockdowns have brought crushing problems for many Chinese nationals. The lockdowns are harsh and inhumane, especially for ordinary citizens who have to work to survive. Friends in China have also reported that college students are quarantined for months in their dormitories. Sanitation facilities including showering are regulated. There had been suicides as the living conditions were unbearable to some.
Excerpts from The New York Times:
By Li Yuan
“We want food, not Covid tests, We want reform, not Cultural Revolution. We want freedom, not lockdowns. We want votes, not a ruler. We want dignity, not lies. We are citizens, not slaves.” In Shanghai, some even shouted the banners’ most radical demand: “Remove the despotic traitor Xi Jinping!”