Freedom Action Now

The Chinese Constitution and Religious Freedom

with 3 comments

The Constitution of the People’s Republic of China is a remarkable document. It guarantees to the Chinese people many rights, among them,

All power in the People’s Republic of China belongs to the people

All nationalities in the People’s Republic of China are equal

All citizens of the People’s Republic of China are equal before the law.

The State respects and preserves human rights

and most interestingly,

Citizens of the People’s Republic of China enjoy freedom of religious belief.
No state organ, public organization or individual may compel citizens to believe in, or not believe in, any religion; nor may they discriminate against citizens who believe in, or do not believe in, any religion.

Here’s how that grand theory works in practice:

Chinese police ‘raid Tibetan monastery’

The US-based ICT said paramilitary police raided the monastery in Aba, in the Sichuan province, on Thursday night and detained more than 300 monks.

As the monks were being driven away, the police beat a group of people who had been standing vigil outside Kirti, resulting in the deaths of two Tibetans aged in their sixties, ICT said, citing exile groups in contact with people in the area.

Again, at an Easter service, China seizes Christians in Easter raid.

Up to 500 members of the Protestant house church movement, unregistered assemblies of worshippers that the government bans to prevent the rise of opposition, have been detained in recent weeks. Yesterday’s arrests were a continuation of the authorities’ increase in repression of dissenters to stop any chance of a revolution such as those seen in North Africa and the Middle-East.

The Constitution cleverly includes the “fine print”:

The state protects normal religious activities. No one may make use of religion to engage in activities that disrupt public order, impair the health of citizens or interfere with the educational system of the state.

If the government says it “disrupts public order”, they’ll cart you away. Whether you’re ever seen again is up to them.

Religious bodies and religious affairs are not subject to any foreign domination.

Especially from Rome, from Tibet, or from the Church of England.

No constitution is worth the paper it’s written on – not even ours – unless the government behind it works to preserve the principles in it.

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Written by freedomactionnow

April 25, 2011 at 8:06 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

Tagged with , ,

3 Responses

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  1. “No constitution is worth the paper it’s written on – not even ours – unless the government behind it works to preserve the principles in it.”

    Right you are – though I’d add this at the end: and there is a vigilant and virtuous citizenry ready and willing to oppose usurpation at every turn.”

    Sadly, we have neither.

    BS Footprint

    May 6, 2011 at 10:14 pm

    • Thanks for stopping by. Another thing I read is that for a true democracy to survive – even a republican democracy – you need an informed and involved electorate.

      Two other things that are in really short supply.

      ZZMike

      May 7, 2011 at 8:29 pm

  2. Go here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LQieQ2am9V0 and you can see the Chinese Constitution in action.

    bobb

    May 17, 2012 at 5:06 pm


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