Living in the vicinity of the Chinese Consulate in Toronto gives me the unique opportunity to witness how disliked the People’s Republic of China is. The much-praised hybrid between communism and capitalism has turned into a monster, which displays clearly the worst sides of both social systems. The communist ideology, with its strong grip over the media and the daily lives of the people, coexists with a wild type of capitalism, which has no respect for the environment, the people or even the basic laws.
Totalitarian China does not limit itself to mistreating only its people or occupied territories like Tibet. It consistently bullies all of its neighbours over the control of waters and islands. Every week we see in front of the Consulate groups of angry people from the countries and territories that China has wronged. Tibetans, Uighurs, Vietnamese, Filipinos, and even the Buddhist sect Falun Gong – they all show up with signs and flags and protest in front of the building with closed dark windows.
Earlier today I had the chance to see a new group – people from Hong Kong.
It is strange to see them demonstrating – not only is Hong Kong a part of China, but it is also a very prosperous area with income much higher than that of the rest of the country. Ever since the territory became a British colony, the unique combination of British rule of law and Chinese entrepreneurship created wealth beyond anything seen before in China.
During the transition of the territory from British to Chinese power, that uniqueness was duly noted. The Chinese government took upon itself the obligation to respect the order and the system of government in Hong Kong for the next 50 years. It looked like a no-brainer – the income going into Beijing’s coffers seemed well worth the compromise.
At the time many expressed skepticism, saying that China is not going to respect the agreement. And they were right – an agreement with a communist country is worth less than the paper it has been printed on. It is just a piece of paper that nobody takes seriously. Long before the 50 years expired, China started to bully Hong Kong the way it bullies Japan, Vietnam, Philippines, and other countries.
That caused large demonstrations, during which the citizens of Hong Kong took the streets in defense of their basic freedoms, now under threat by the central government. Unlike previous events, which were tolerated, this time China brutally dispersed the demonstrations with tear gas (although it still uses the local Hong Kong police).
The brutality was noticed in the rest of the world and that’s what brought the protestors in front of the Chinese Consulate. After standing there for a while and making their demands for freedom known, a few of them attempted to enter the Consulate to deliver a petition with their concerns. After long talk with the police, they were refused entry.
As everything related to the life in communist countries, the erosion of freedoms is likely to continue. Communism can exist only under full control over its subjects. In the case of China things are even easier, because the insatiable desire of the West for cheap goods allows international corporations to exploit the cheap labour of the country, thus providing the communists with means to cling to power.
The participants in the demonstration brought a petition protesting the violence in Hong Kong. They wanted to hand it to the Chinese diplomats in the Consulate. Naturally, with the help of the ever friendly Toronto Police, who are always eager to “protect” odd people and institutions, the delegation was refused an entry and advised that they shouldn’t even try to do what they are doing.
You can see part of the demonstration and the verbal exchange in the video below.
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