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The Economical Effect Upon Human Rights In China

821 words - 4 pages

In his inaugural address, U.S. President John Kennedy characterized Americans as "unwilling to witness or permit the slow undoing of those human rights to which [. . .] we are committed today at home and around the world". His description accurately expresses the attitude of not only America, but the world. Ever since 1948, when the United Nations passed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, it has officially committed itself to the promotion of human and civil rights throughout the planet. Yet, even today, its mission has only been partially accomplished. Many cite poverty as a leading cause of poor human rights in China. The current economic situation of China affects human rights by ...view middle of the document...

Throughout the nation, police break up protests and arrest demonstrators daily (Melloan). The strict rules regarding speech have grabbed international attention. Ironically, during a visit by a U.N. human rights expert, officials arrested several critics of the government's attitude towards the freedom of its people under arrest (Buckley). The communist party portrays the message that it is above the law. This attitude has caught foreign attention. The U.S. Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor condemns the political oppression of the communist party. The U.N. has ordered China to improve its judicial system by separating it from the political party (Buckley).

During recent years, the government has slowly transformed the formerly dominant communism to a free, privately held, economy. Capitalism has brought new wealth to the Chinese people, but still needs to progress more to end human rights abuses. Today, private business accounts for thirty to forty percent of China's gross domestic product (U.S. Bureau). In recent years, the communist party has allowed for greater internal debate among its selected members (Melloan). Most are too fearful of rebellion to change to a capitalist society (Tyson).

Laborers face the poverty created by fear of communism the greatest. Today, about one in three peasants is unemployed, the greatest in twenty years (Lin). Nicholas Becquelin, a U.N. director on human rights, describes the situation in China as "Economic growth is slowing [and] unemployment is soaring" (Magnier). Since 1989, farmers' income has only risen slightly (Tyson). Many accuse the state-set prices...

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