Commentary: Human rights in China, a lesson to be learned

Source: Xinhua| 2017-10-19 17:22:56|Editor: Zhou Xin
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by Xinhua writer Li Laifang

BEIJING, Oct. 19 (Xinhua) -- A moderately prosperous society then onward to prosperity for all: these goals of the Communist Party of China (CPC) are not mere economic or social catchphrases, but a clear statement of China's stance on human rights.

Unfortunately, such a position is frequently misunderstood, misinterpreted or deliberately distorted by Western "crusaders." They would do well to stop pointing their crooked fingers at China and open their eyes to reality.

For most Chinese, human rights mean a roof over the head, literacy for all, food in the belly, expectation of reasonable health care in case of sickness, bright future for the children, and optimism for the old.

From an external perspective, in the Western world, racial discrimination, black ops, violence, gun crime, illegal and immoral wars, and battles between police and civilians never seem far away.

It is more sad than ironic that the refugee crisis in Europe, characterized by scores of corpses of drowned children washed up on Mediterranean shores, is partly the result of military action by Western powers in the name of humanitarianism.

Human rights abuses by developed powers go almost unnoticed by sanctimonious observers who seem to only pay attention to abuses in developing countries.

In his address to the opening of 19th National Congress of the CPC, Chinese leader Xi Jinping spoke of his plans for the nation's transformation by the middle of this century -- a vision of more prosperous, happier, safer and healthier lives for the Chinese people.

Seeking happiness for the people and representing their fundamental interests, the CPC is steadfast in its resolve against illegal, selfish or vested interests. Common prosperity is the very definition of socialism with Chinese characteristics and perhaps the most fundamental human rights of all.

China's income gap is narrowing and every year the very poorest people, those at the bottom of ladder, see their lives improve. At the same time the wealth gap in some major developed powers has widened: poverty, inequality, and the consequent social instability and extremism are on the rise. Their much praised welfare systems are under huge pressure as more and more money swells the offshore bank accounts of the very rich while those squeezed out by this concentration of capital go short of food.

Rule of law, people's democracy, and improved living standards in every respect -- education, employment, housing, medical care, social insurance, transportation -- are the human rights which the Chinese people demand.

Those are the rights they have been promised, and those are exactly the rights which the CPC is delivering.

China's basic medical insurance now covers more than 95 percent of the population. The rule of law has markedly reduced government intervention in the courts, greatly enhancing judicial fairness and transparency. Regional autonomy assures the rights of ethnic minorities.

While the plague of terrorism and its concomitant racism bring disorder and death to countries once considered paragons of fairness and justice, more and more people have begun to notice that China is one of the safest and most secure countries in the world.

The CPC leadership is fully aware of the people's growing needs for better lives and has put forward new, long-term measures to meet their evolving demands. Priority is given to education, employment and raising incomes. More equitable public services are made available. Special attention is devoted to the most vulnerable members of society. On the road to Xiaokang -- a moderately prosperous society -- none shall be left behind.

These ideas constitute a broad scope of human rights for the Chinese people and will bring well-rounded human development. Common prosperity by around 2050, if achieved, will be an unmatched contribution to the history of human rights.

Human rights abuses are caused by basic flaws in political systems. The needs of the have-nots must always take precedence over the needs of the haves.

Today's challenge is whether Western plutocracy recognizes that the needs of the underclass transcend those of privileged few, and looks to Chinese democracy for a new model of governance which protects the rights of all.